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Rent-sharing under different bargaining regimes : Evidence from linked employer-employee data


  • Michael Rusinek

    () (Université Libre de Bruxelles, DULBEA)

  • François Rycx

    () (National Bank of Belgium, Research Department
    Université Libre de Bruxelles, DULBEA
    IZA Bonn)


In many European countries, the majority of workers have their wage rates determined directly by industry-level agreements. For some workers, industry agreements are supplemented by firm-specific agreements. Yet, the relative importance of individual company and industry agreements (in other words, the degree of centralisation) differs drastically across industries. The authors of this paper use unique linked employer-employee data from a 2003 survey in Belgium to examine how these bargaining features affect the extent of rent-sharing. Their results show that there is substantially more rent-sharing in decentralised than in centralised industries, even when controlling for the endogeneity of profits, for heterogeneity among workers and firms and for differences in characteristics between bargaining regimes. Moreover, in centralised industries, rent-sharing is found only for workers that are covered by a company agreement. The findings of this paper finally suggest that, within decentralised industries, both firm-specific and industry-wide bargaining generate rent-sharing to the same extent.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Rusinek & François Rycx, 2008. "Rent-sharing under different bargaining regimes : Evidence from linked employer-employee data," Working Paper Research 152, National Bank of Belgium.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbb:reswpp:200812-1

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    Cited by:

    1. Andréasson, Hannes, 2014. "The effect of decentralized wage bargaining on the structure of wages and firm performance," Ratio Working Papers 241, The Ratio Institute.
    2. Matthias Strifler & Thomas Beissinger, 2016. "Fairness Considerations in Labor Union Wage Setting – A Theoretical Analysis," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 63(3), pages 303-330, July.
    3. Jean-Luc Demeulemeester & Olivier Debande, 2008. "Quality and Variety Competition in Higher Education," Working Papers 08-10, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC).
    4. Bernal, Oscar & Oosterlinck, Kim & Szafarz, Ariane, 2010. "Observing bailout expectations during a total eclipse of the sun," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(7), pages 1193-1205, November.
    5. Kampelmann, Stephan & Rycx, Francois, 2011. "Does Institutional Diversity Account for Pay Rules in Germany and Belgium?," IZA Discussion Papers 6010, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Kampelmann, Stephan & Rycx, François, 2012. "The impact of educational mismatch on firm productivity: Evidence from linked panel data," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 918-931.
    7. Philip Du Caju & François Rycx & Ilan Tojerow, 2012. "Wage structure effects of international trade in a small open economy: the case of Belgium," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 148(2), pages 297-331, June.
    8. Pfister, C., 2007. "Labour market flexibility: what does Banque de France research tell us?," Quarterly selection of articles - Bulletin de la Banque de France, Banque de France, issue 10, pages 79-93, Winter.
    9. François Rycx & Yves Saks & Ilan Tojerow, 2015. "Does Education Raise Productivity and Wages Equally? The Moderating Roles of Age, Gender and Industry," Working Paper Research 281, National Bank of Belgium.
    10. Alessia Matano & Paolo Naticchioni, 2017. "The Extent of Rent Sharing along the Wage Distribution," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 55(4), pages 751-777, December.
    11. repec:dau:papers:123456789/5843 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Alessia Matano & Paolo Naticchioni, 2011. "Is There Rent Sharing in Italy? Evidence from Employer-Employee Data," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 8(2), pages 265-279, December.
    13. Nils aus dem Moore, 2014. "Shifting the Burden of Corporate Taxes: Heterogeneity in Direct Wage Incidence," Ruhr Economic Papers 0531, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
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    15. repec:bla:labour:v:31:y:2017:i:2:p:153-173 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. M. Druant & Ph. Du Caju & Ph. Delhez, 2008. "Results of the Bank’s survey of wage-setting in Belgian firms," Economic Review, National Bank of Belgium, issue iii, pages 49-73, September.
    17. Benoît Mahy & François Rycx & Mélanie Volral, 2008. "L'influence de la dispersion salariale sur la performance des grandes entreprises belges," Reflets et perspectives de la vie économique, De Boeck Université, vol. 0(3), pages 27-40.
    18. Thomas Breda, 2010. "Firms' rents, workers' bargaining power and the union wage premium in France," PSE Working Papers halshs-00564903, HAL.
    19. Charles Plaigin, 2009. "Exploratory study on the presence of cultural and institutional growth spillovers," DULBEA Working Papers 09-03.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    20. Guy Navon & Ilan Tojerow, 2013. "Does Rent-sharing Profit Female and Male Workers? Evidence from Israeli Matched Employer–Employee Data," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 27(3), pages 331-349, September.
    21. Pierre-Guillaume Méon & Ariane Szafarz, 2008. "Labor market discrimination as an agency cost," DULBEA Working Papers 08-19.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.

    More about this item


    Rent-sharing; collective bargaining; propensity score matching.;

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J51 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Trade Unions: Objectives, Structure, and Effects

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