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Unionization and Employment Behavior

  • David G. Blanchflower
  • Neil Millward
  • Andrew J. Oswald

Although there exists a large literature on the effects of trade unions upon wages, there is no published work that uses microeconomic data to examine the employment consequences of unionization. The paper addresses this issue with a new British data set and shows that, even after the addition of a substantial set of control variables, there is a strong association between poor employment performance and the presence of trade unions. The union employment growth differential is estimated at approximately -3% per annum.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3180.

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Date of creation: Nov 1989
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Economic Journal, Vol. 101, No. 407, pp.815-834, July 1991.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3180
Note: LS
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
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  1. Leonard, J.S., 1987. "Employment Variation and Wage Rigidity: A Comparison of Union and Non-Union Plants," Papers 6, California Berkeley - Institute of Industrial Relations.
  2. Blanchflower, David G. & Millward, Neil, 1988. "Trade unions and employment change : An analysis of British establishment data," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 717-726, March.
  3. David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald & Mario D. Garrett, 1989. "Insider Power in Wage Determination," NBER Working Papers 3179, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Stewart, Mark B, 1983. "Relative Earnings and Individual Union Membership in the United Kingdom," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 50(198), pages 111-25, May.
  5. Daniel S. Hamermesh, 1988. "Data Difficulties in Labor Economics," NBER Working Papers 2622, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • Daniel S. Hamermesh, 1991. "Data Difficulties in Labor Economics," NBER Chapters, in: Fifty Years of Economic Measurement: The Jubilee of the Conference on Research in Income and Wealth, pages 273-298 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Stafford, Frank, 1984. "Forestalling the Demise of Empirical Economics: The Role of Microdata in Labor Economics Research," Working Paper Series 119, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  7. Gaskins, Darius Jr., 1971. "Dynamic limit pricing: Optimal pricing under threat of entry," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 306-322, September.
  8. Oswald, Andrew J., 1988. "Introduction," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 695-697, March.
  9. Dunne, Timothy & Roberts, Mark J & Samuelson, Larry, 1989. "Plant Turnover and Gross Employment Flows in the U.S. Manufacturing Sector," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 7(1), pages 48-71, January.
  10. Clark, Kim B, 1984. "Unionization and Firm Performance: The Impact on Profits, Growth, and Productivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(5), pages 893-919, December.
  11. Addison, John T & Hirsch, Barry T, 1989. "Union Effects on Productivity, Profits, and Growth: Has the Long Run Arrived?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 7(1), pages 72-105, January.
  12. Freeman, Richard, 1988. "Union density and economic performance : An analysis of U.S. States," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 707-716, March.
  13. Freeman, Richard B & Medoff, James L, 1982. "Substitution between Production Labor and Other Inputs in Unionized and Nonunionized Manufacturing," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(2), pages 220-33, May.
  14. Nickell, S.J., 1987. "Dynamic models of labour demand," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 9, pages 473-522 Elsevier.
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