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Politics in Wage setting: Does government colour matter?

Author

Listed:
  • Kåre Johansen

    () (Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology)

  • Ørjan Mydland
  • Bjarne Strøm

    () (Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology)

Abstract

This paper studies the relationship between wage formation and the political colour of the government in an economy with centralized wage bargaining. Ideological, organizational and personal ties between the central trade union and the social democratic political party suggest that the trade union may behave significantly different in wage negotiations under a social democratic than under a conservative government. Using time series data for Norway, we estimate that changing from a conservative to a social democratic central government significantly reduces manufacturing wages and makes wages more responsive to unemployment. This result is consistent with a wage bargaining model augmented by political preferences of the union leaders and suggests that the effect of bargaining coordination depends on the political colour of the government. The estimated effects are both robust with respect to model specification and stable over time.

Suggested Citation

  • Kåre Johansen & Ørjan Mydland & Bjarne Strøm, 2006. "Politics in Wage setting: Does government colour matter?," Working Paper Series 6506, Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
  • Handle: RePEc:nst:samfok:6506
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    File URL: http://www.svt.ntnu.no/iso/WP/2006/1300106Politicsandwages.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Cited by:

    1. Potrafke, Niklas, 2010. "The growth of public health expenditures in OECD countries: Do government ideology and electoral motives matter?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 797-810, December.
    2. Niklas Potrafke, 2011. "Does government ideology influence budget composition? Empirical evidence from OECD countries," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 101-134, June.
    3. Niklas Potrafke, 2012. "Political cycles and economic performance in OECD countries: empirical evidence from 1951–2006," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 150(1), pages 155-179, January.
    4. Christian Bjørnskov & Niklas Potrafke, 2012. "Political Ideology and Economic Freedom Across Canadian Provinces," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan;Eastern Economic Association, vol. 38(2), pages 143-166.
    5. Niklas Potrafke, 2010. "Ideology and cultural policy," TWI Research Paper Series 49, Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universität Konstanz.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Wages; political regime; time series analysis;

    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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