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Reflections on the Inter-Industry Wage Structure

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  • Alan B. Krueger
  • Lawrence H. Summers

Abstract

This paper reviews available evidence on the inter-industry wage structure. The inter-industry wage structure is remarkably similar in different eras, in different countries, and among different types of workers. Industries with high capital-to-labor ratios, monopoly power and high profits pay relatively high wages. We conclude that the competitive model cannot without substantial modification provide an adequate explanation of the inter-industry wage structure. The implications of this finding for micro and macro economic theory and policy are examined.

Suggested Citation

  • Alan B. Krueger & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Reflections on the Inter-Industry Wage Structure," NBER Working Papers 1968, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1968
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    1. George A. Akerlof & Janet L. Yellen, 1985. "A Near-Rational Model of the Business Cycle, with Wage and Price Inertia," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(Supplemen), pages 823-838.
    2. Lawrence F. Katz, 1986. "Efficiency Wage Theories: A Partial Evaluation," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1986, Volume 1, pages 235-290, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Wachter, Michael L, 1970. "Cyclical Variation in the Interindustry Wage Structure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(1), pages 75-84, March.
    4. William T. Dickens & Lawrence F. Katz, 1986. "Interindustry Wage Differences and Industry Characteristics," NBER Working Papers 2014, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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