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Assessing the Impact of Labour Market Policies on Productivity: A Difference-in-Differences Approach

Author

Listed:
  • Andrea Bassanini

    (OECD)

  • Danielle Venn

    (OECD)

Abstract

The impact of four labour market policies – employment protection legislation, minimum wages, parental leave and unemployment benefits – on productivity is examined here, using annual cross-country aggregate data on these policies and industry-level data on productivity from 1979 to 2003. We use a "difference-in-differences" framework, which exploits likely differences in the productivity effect of policies in different industries. Our identifying assumption is that a specific policy influences worker or firm behaviour, and thereby productivity, more in industries where the policy in question is likely to be more binding than in other industries. The advantage of this approach is twofold. First, as in standard cross-country analysis, we can exploit the cross-country variation of policies. Second, in contrast with standard cross-country analysis, we can control for unobserved factors that, on average, are likely to have the same effect on productivity in both policy-binding and non-binding industries. Nous examinons l'impact de quatre politiques du marché du travail – la législation pour la protection de l'emploi, le salaire minimum, le congé parental et l'indemnisation du chômage – sur la productivité. Pour ces politiques, nous utilisons des données annuelles agrégées comparables entre pays ainsi que des données sectorielles sur la productivité de 1979 à 2003 sont utilisées. Nous analysons ces données sur la base d'une méthode de "différence de différences", qui exploite la variabilité des effets des politiques dans les différents secteurs. Notre stratégie d'identification se fonde sur l'hypothèse que les comportements des entreprises ou des salariés, et donc leur productivité, sont davantage influencés par une politique dans les secteurs d'activité où celle-ci est vraisemblablement plus contraignante. L'avantage de cette approche est double. D'une part, à l'instar des analyses agrégées concernant plusieurs pays, nous pouvons exploiter la variabilité des politiques entre les pays. D'autre part, contrairement à ces analyses, nous pouvons contrôler pour des facteurs inobservés qui, en moyenne, ont vraisemblablement le même effet sur la productivité dans les secteurs où les politiques sont contraignantes et dans les secteurs où elles ne le sont pas.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrea Bassanini & Danielle Venn, 2007. "Assessing the Impact of Labour Market Policies on Productivity: A Difference-in-Differences Approach," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 54, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:elsaab:54-en
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/122873667103
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    Cited by:

    1. Pontus Braunerhjelm & Sameeksha Desai & Johan Eklund, 2015. "Regulation, firm dynamics and entrepreneurship," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 40(1), pages 1-11, August.
    2. Poschke, Markus, 2009. "Employment protection, firm selection, and growth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1074-1085, November.
    3. Lisi, Domenico, 2013. "The impact of temporary employment and employment protection on labour productivity : evidence from an industry-level panel of EU countries," Journal for Labour Market Research, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany], vol. 46(2), pages 119-144.
    4. World Bank, 2013. "Minimum Wage Policy : Lessons with a Focus on the ASEAN Region," World Bank Other Operational Studies 16687, The World Bank.
    5. Andrea Bassanini, 2012. "Aggregate Earnings and Macroeconomic Shocks: the Role of Labour Market Policies and Institutions," Review of Economics and Institutions, Università di Perugia, vol. 3(3).
    6. Bassanini, Andrea & Brunello, Giorgio, 2007. "Barriers to Entry, Deregulation and Workplace Training," IZA Discussion Papers 2746, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Campos, Nauro F & Nugent, Jeffrey B., 2012. "The Dynamics of the Regulation of Labor in Developing and Developed Countries since 1960," IZA Discussion Papers 6881, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Simon Deakin & Prabirjit Sarkar, 2008. "Assessing the Long-Run Economic Impact of Labour Law Systems: A theoretical Reappraisal and Analysis of New Time Series Data," Working Papers wp367, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge.
    9. Lisi, Domenico, 2009. "The Impact of Temporary Employment on Labour Productivity: Evidence from an Industry-Level Panel of EU Countries," MPRA Paper 26076, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Betcherman, Gordon, 2014. "Labor market regulations : what do we know about their impacts in developing countries ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6819, The World Bank.
    11. Clovis Kerdrain & Isabell Koske & Isabelle Wanner, 2010. "The Impact of Structural Policies on Saving, Investment and Current Accounts," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 815, OECD Publishing.
    12. Ton van Schaik & Theo van de Klundert, 2013. "Employment protection legislation and catching-up," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(8), pages 973-981, March.
    13. Clovis Kerdrain & Isabell Koske & Isabelle Wanner, 2011. "Current Account Imbalances: can Structural Reforms Help to Reduce Them?," OECD Journal: Economic Studies, OECD Publishing, vol. 2011(1), pages 1-44.
    14. Cette, G. & Lopez, J. & Mairesse, J., 2016. "What is the macroeconomic impact of ambitious structural reforms on product and labour markets?," Rue de la Banque, Banque de France, issue 27, june..
    15. Primož Dolenc & Suzana Laporšek, 2013. "Flexicurity Policies and their Association with Productivity in the European Union," Prague Economic Papers, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2013(2), pages 224-239.
    16. repec:spr:jlabrs:v:50:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s12651-017-0222-8 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. World Bank, 2011. "Employment Protection Legislation and Labor Market Outcomes : Theory, Evidence and Lessons for Croatia," World Bank Other Operational Studies 12902, The World Bank.
    18. Lisi, Domenico & Malo, Miguel, 2014. "Cross-Sectors Skill Intensity, Productivity and Temporary Employment," MPRA Paper 56470, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    19. Andrea Bassanini & Danielle Venn, 2008. "The Impact of Labour Market Policies on Productivity in OECD Countries," International Productivity Monitor, Centre for the Study of Living Standards, vol. 17, pages 3-15, Fall.
    20. International Monetary Fund, 2009. "Spain; Selected Issues," IMF Staff Country Reports 09/129, International Monetary Fund.
    21. Hervé Boulhol & Laure Turner, 2009. "Employment-Productivity Trade-off and Labour Composition," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 698, OECD Publishing.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J08 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics Policies
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

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