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The Determinants of U.S. Labor Disputes

We present a bargaining model of union contract negotiations, in which the union decides between two threats: the union can strike or continue to work under the expired contract. The model makes predictions about the level of dispute activity and the form the disputes take. Strike incidence increases as the strike threat becomes more attractive, because of low unemployment or a real wage drop during the prior contract. We test these predictions by estimating logistic models of dispute incidence and dispute composition for U.S. labor contract negotiations from 1970 to 1989. We find empirical support for the model's key predictions, but these associations are weaker after 1981.

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File URL: http://www.cramton.umd.edu/papers1990-1994/94jole-determinants-of-us-labor-disputes.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton in its series Papers of Peter Cramton with number 94jole.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: 1994
Date of revision: 09 Jun 1998
Publication status: Published in Journal of Labor Economics, 12:2, April 1994, pages 180-209.
Handle: RePEc:pcc:pccumd:94jole
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Economics Department, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742-7211

Phone: (202) 318-0520
Fax: (202) 318-0520
Web page: http://www.cramton.umd.edu

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