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Individual vs. Collective Bargaining in the Large Firm Search Model

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  • Bauer, Christian
  • Lingens, Jörg

Abstract

We analyze the welfare and employment effects of different wage bargaining regimes. Within the large firm search model, we show that collective bargaining affects employment via two channels. Collective bargaining exerts opposing effects on job creation and wage setting. Firms have a stronger incentive for strategic employment, while workers benefit from the threat of a strike. We find that the employment increase due to the strategic motive is dominated by the employment decrease due to the increase in workers' threat point. In aggregate equilibrium, employment is ineciently low under collective bargaining. But it is not always true that equilibrium wages exceed those under individual bargaining. If unemployment benefits are sufficiently low, collectively bargained wages are smaller. The theory sheds new light on policies concerned with strategic employment and the relation between replacement rates and the extent of collective wage bargaining.

Suggested Citation

  • Bauer, Christian & Lingens, Jörg, 2010. "Individual vs. Collective Bargaining in the Large Firm Search Model," Discussion Papers in Economics 11315, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:lmu:muenec:11315
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    File URL: https://epub.ub.uni-muenchen.de/11315/1/collective_wp_mucecon.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. Gabriel Felbermayr & Julien Prat, 2011. "Product Market Regulation, Firm Selection, And Unemployment," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 278-317, April.
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    8. Stole, Lars A & Zwiebel, Jeffrey, 1996. "Organizational Design and Technology Choice under Intrafirm Bargaining," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 195-222, March.
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    13. Pierre Cahuc & Francois Marque & Etienne Wasmer, 2008. "A Theory Of Wages And Labor Demand With Intra-Firm Bargaining And Matching Frictions," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 49(3), pages 943-972, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Leo Kaas & Philipp Kircher, 2015. "Efficient Firm Dynamics in a Frictional Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(10), pages 3030-3060, October.
    2. Cardullo, Gabriele & Conti, Maurizio & Sulis, Giovanni, 2015. "Sunk capital, unions and the hold-up problem: Theory and evidence from cross-country sectoral data," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 253-274.
    3. Sabien Dobbelaere & Roland Iwan Luttens, 2011. "Collective Bargaining under Non-binding Contracts," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-041/3, Tinbergen Institute.
    4. William Hawkins, 2015. "Bargaining with Commitment Between Workers and Large Firms," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 18(2), pages 350-364, April.
    5. Dobbelaere, Sabien & Luttens, Roland Iwan, 2013. "The Economics of First-Contract Mediation," IZA Discussion Papers 7541, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    search; overemployment; collective wage bargaining; wage determination;

    JEL classification:

    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General
    • J50 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - General
    • J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts

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