IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/25719.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Labor Market Power

Author

Listed:
  • David W. Berger
  • Kyle F. Herkenhoff
  • Simon Mongey

Abstract

To measure labor market power in the US economy, we develop a tractable quantitative, general equilibrium, oligopsony model of the labor market. We estimate key model parameters by matching the firm-level relationship between labor market share and employment size and wage responses to state corporate tax changes. The model quantitatively replicates quasi-experimental evidence on (i) imperfect productivity-wage pass-through, (ii) strategic behavior of dominant employers, and (iii) the local labor market impact of mergers. We then measure welfare losses relative to the efficient allocation. Accounting for transition dynamics, we quantify welfare losses from labor market power relative to the efficient allocation as roughly 6 percent of lifetime consumption. An analytical decomposition attributes equal parts to dead-weight losses and misallocation. Lastly, we find that declining local concentration added 4 ppt to labor’s share of income between 1977 and 2013.

Suggested Citation

  • David W. Berger & Kyle F. Herkenhoff & Simon Mongey, 2019. "Labor Market Power," NBER Working Papers 25719, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:25719
    Note: EFG LS
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w25719.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Andrew Atkeson & Ariel Burstein, 2008. "Pricing-to-Market, Trade Costs, and International Relative Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1998-2031, December.
    2. Juan Carlos Suárez Serrato & Owen Zidar, 2016. "Who Benefits from State Corporate Tax Cuts? A Local Labor Markets Approach with Heterogeneous Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(9), pages 2582-2624, September.
    3. Douglas O. Staiger & Joanne Spetz & Ciaran S. Phibbs, 2010. "Is There Monopsony in the Labor Market? Evidence from a Natural Experiment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(2), pages 211-236, April.
    4. David Autor & David Dorn & Lawrence F Katz & Christina Patterson & John Van Reenen, 2020. "The Fall of the Labor Share and the Rise of Superstar Firms [“Automation and New Tasks: How Technology Displaces and Reinstates Labor”]," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 135(2), pages 645-709.
    5. Azar, José & Marinescu, Ioana & Steinbaum, Marshall & Taska, Bledi, 2020. "Concentration in US labor markets: Evidence from online vacancy data," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C).
    6. Charles Whalen & Felix Reichling, 2017. "Estimates of the Frisch Elasticity of Labor Supply: A Review," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan;Eastern Economic Association, vol. 43(1), pages 37-42, January.
    7. Jarosch, Gregor & Nimczik, Jan Sebastian & Sorkin, Isaac, 2019. "Granular Search, Market Structure, and Wages," IZA Discussion Papers 12574, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    8. Brooks, Wyatt J. & Kaboski, Joseph P. & Li, Yao Amber & Qian, Wei, 2021. "Exploitation of labor? Classical monopsony power and labor's share," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 150(C).
    9. Efraim Benmelech & Nittai K. Bergman & Hyunseob Kim, 2018. "Strong Employers and Weak Employees: How Does Employer Concentration Affect Wages?," Working Papers 18-15, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    10. Esteban Rossi-Hansberg & Pierre-Daniel Sarte & Nicholas Trachter, 2021. "Diverging Trends in National and Local Concentration," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(1), pages 115-150.
    11. Arindrajit Dube & Jeff Jacobs & Suresh Naidu & Siddharth Suri, 2020. "Monopsony in Online Labor Markets," American Economic Review: Insights, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 33-46, March.
    12. David Card & Ana Rute Cardoso & Joerg Heining & Patrick Kline, 2018. "Firms and Labor Market Inequality: Evidence and Some Theory," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(S1), pages 13-70.
    13. Felix Reichling & Charles Whalen, 2012. "Review of Estimates of the Frisch Elasticity of Labor Supply: Working Paper 2012-13," Working Papers 43676, Congressional Budget Office.
    14. Kevin Rinz, 2018. "Labor Market Concentration, Earnings Inequality, and Earnings Mobility," CARRA Working Papers 2018-10, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    15. Benjamin Friedrich & Costas Meghir & Lisa Laun & Luigi Pistaferri, 2018. "Earnings Dynamics and Firm-Level Shocks," 2018 Meeting Papers 536, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    16. Gaelan MacKenzie, 2021. "Trade and Market Power in Product and Labor Markets," Staff Working Papers 21-17, Bank of Canada.
    17. Philipp Kircher & Paul Muller & Michele Belot, 2017. "How Wage Announcements Affect Job Search Behaviour - A Field Experimental Investigation," 2017 Meeting Papers 722, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    18. Patrick Kline & Neviana Petkova & Heidi Williams & Owen Zidar, 2019. "Who Profits from Patents? Rent-Sharing at Innovative Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 134(3), pages 1343-1404.
    19. José Azar & Ioana Marinescu & Marshall I. Steinbaum, 2017. "Labor Market Concentration," NBER Working Papers 24147, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Thierry Lallemand & Robert Plasman & François Rycx, 2007. "The establishment-size wage premium: evidence from European countries," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 34(5), pages 427-451, December.
    21. Stefano Banfi & Benjamín Villena-Roldán, 2019. "Do High-Wage Jobs Attract More Applicants? Directed Search Evidence from the Online Labor Market," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(3), pages 715-746.
    22. Verboven, Frank, 1996. "The nested logit model and representative consumer theory," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 57-63, January.
    23. Teresa C. Fort & Shawn D. Klimek, 2018. "The Effects of Industry Classification Changes on US Employment Composition," Working Papers 18-28, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Priyaranjan Jha & Antonio Rodriguez-Lopez, 2019. "Monopsonistic Labor Markets and International Trade," Working Papers 192001, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
    2. Kyle F. Herkenhoff & Gajendran Raveendranathan, 2019. "Who Bears the Welfare Costs of Monopoly? The Case of the Credit Card Industry," Working Papers 2019-071, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
    3. Musa Abdu & Adamu Jibir, 2019. "Sources of Market Power among Firms in Sub-Saharan Africa: Do Institutions Matter in Competitive Policies?," Lahore Journal of Economics, Department of Economics, The Lahore School of Economics, vol. 24(2), pages 115-148, July-Dec.
    4. Thibaut Lamadon & Magne Mogstad & Bradley Setzler, 2019. "Imperfect competition, compensating differentials and rent sharing in the U.S. labor market," Discussion Papers 918, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    5. Brooks, Wyatt J. & Kaboski, Joseph P. & Li, Yao Amber & Qian, Wei, 2021. "Exploitation of labor? Classical monopsony power and labor's share," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 150(C).
    6. Bradley Setzler & Felix Tintelnot, 2019. "The Effects of Foreign Multinationals on Workers and Firms in the United States," NBER Working Papers 26149, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Benjamin Griffy, 2018. "Borrowing Constraints, Search, and Life-Cycle Inequality," Discussion Papers 18-01, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
    8. Saxell, Tanja & Nurminen, Mikko, 2020. "Physician Prices and Competition: Evidence from Acquisitions in the Private Health Care Sector," Working Papers 130, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
    9. Kevin Rinz, 2019. "Did Timing Matter? Life Cycle Differences in Effects of Exposure to the Great Recession," Working Papers 19-25, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    10. Acharya, Sushant & Wee, Shu Lin, 2020. "On-the-job Search and the Productivity-Wage Gap," CEPR Discussion Papers 14430, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    11. Nicolas Abad, 2019. "Firms' Labor Market Power and Aggregate Instability," Working Papers hal-02329802, HAL.
    12. Quint Wiersma, 2019. "The impact of WTO accession on Chinese firms' product and labor market power," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 19-037/V, Tinbergen Institute.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Alan Manning, 2021. "Monopsony in Labor Markets: A Review," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 74(1), pages 3-26, January.
    2. Steven Berry & Martin Gaynor & Fiona Scott Morton, 2019. "Do Increasing Markups Matter? Lessons from Empirical Industrial Organization," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 33(3), pages 44-68, Summer.
    3. Kevin Rinz, 2018. "Labor Market Concentration, Earnings Inequality, and Earnings Mobility," CARRA Working Papers 2018-10, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    4. Ben Lipsius, 2018. "Labor Market Concentration does not Explain the Falling Labor Share," 2018 Papers pli1202, Job Market Papers.
    5. Anna Sokolova & Todd Sorensen, 2021. "Monopsony in Labor Markets: A Meta-Analysis," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 74(1), pages 27-55, January.
    6. Albert Jan Hummel, 2021. "Monopsony Power, Income Taxation and Welfare," CESifo Working Paper Series 9128, CESifo.
    7. Albert Jan Hummel, 2021. "Monopsony power, income taxation and welfare," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 21-051/VI, Tinbergen Institute.
    8. Francesco Amodio & Nicolás de Roux, 2021. "Labor Market Power in Developing Countries: Evidence from Colombian Plants," Documentos CEDE 019267, Universidad de los Andes - CEDE.
    9. Azar, José & Marinescu, Ioana & Steinbaum, Marshall & Taska, Bledi, 2020. "Concentration in US labor markets: Evidence from online vacancy data," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C).
    10. Kevin Rinz, 2019. "Did Timing Matter? Life Cycle Differences in Effects of Exposure to the Great Recession," Working Papers 19-25, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    11. Marinescu, Ioana & Ouss, Ivan & Pape, Louis-Daniel, 2021. "Wages, hires, and labor market concentration," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 184(C), pages 506-605.
    12. Jarosch, Gregor & Nimczik, Jan Sebastian & Sorkin, Isaac, 2019. "Granular Search, Market Structure, and Wages," IZA Discussion Papers 12574, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    13. Federico Huneeus & Kory Kroft & Kevin Lim, 2021. "Earnings Inequality in Production Networks," NBER Working Papers 28424, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Fernández-Villaverde, Jesús & Mandelman, Federico & Yu, Yang & Zanetti, Francesco, 2021. "The “Matthew effect” and market concentration: Search complementarities and monopsony power," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 121(C), pages 62-90.
    15. Cortes, Guido Matias & Tschopp, Jeanne, 2020. "Rising Concentration and Wage Inequality," IZA Discussion Papers 13557, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    16. José Azar & Xavier Vives, 2018. "Oligopoly, Macroeconomic Performance, and Competition Policy," CESifo Working Paper Series 7189, CESifo.
    17. Munguia Corella, Luis Felipe, 2020. "Minimum Wages in Monopsonistic Labor Markets," SocArXiv abpj9, Center for Open Science.
    18. Okudaira, Hiroko & Takizawa, Miho & Yamanouchi, Kenta, 2019. "Minimum wage effects across heterogeneous markets," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 110-122.
    19. Matthew E. Kahn & Joseph Tracy, 2019. "Monopsony in Spatial Equilibrium," NBER Working Papers 26295, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Dario Tortarolo & Roman D. Zarate, 2020. "Imperfect competition in product and labour markets. A quantitative analysis," Discussion Papers 2020-05, Nottingham Interdisciplinary Centre for Economic and Political Research (NICEP).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J42 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Monopsony; Segmented Labor Markets

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:25719. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.