IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/sbp/wpaper/55.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Stick Wages in a Developing Country: Lessons from Structured Interviews in Pakistan

Author

Listed:
  • Waqas Ahmed

    () (State Bank of Pakistan)

  • Muhammad Ali Choudhary

    () (State Bank of Pakistan)

  • Sajawal Khan

    () (State Bank of Pakistan)

  • Saima Naeem

    () (State Bank of Pakistan)

  • Gylfi Zoega

    () (Birkbeck College, University of London)

Abstract

We contribute to the growing literature on the empirical evidence for wage rigidity using structured interviews for Pakistan. The novelty of the study consists of using data from a developing country which provides the basis for a comparison with studies performed in the developed countries. Our sample of 1189 managers finds widespread support for downward nominal wage rigidity while real wage rigidity is less pronounced although still present. Concerns about the adverse effects of wage reductions on effort, morale, the most productive workers leaving (adverse selection) and the minimum-wage largely explain the presence of nominal wage rigidity. All sectors, irrespective of time, take minimum-wage changes into account when setting wages so that the law very much sets wage expectations.

Suggested Citation

  • Waqas Ahmed & Muhammad Ali Choudhary & Sajawal Khan & Saima Naeem & Gylfi Zoega, 2013. "Stick Wages in a Developing Country: Lessons from Structured Interviews in Pakistan," SBP Working Paper Series 55, State Bank of Pakistan, Research Department.
  • Handle: RePEc:sbp:wpaper:55
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sbp.org.pk/repec/sbp/wpaper/wp55.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2013
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Alan S. Blinder & Don H. Choi, 1990. "A Shred of Evidence on Theories of Wage Stickiness," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(4), pages 1003-1015.
    2. Jan Babecký & Philip Du Caju & Theodora Kosma & Martina Lawless & Julián Messina & Tairi Rõõm, 2010. "Downward Nominal and Real Wage Rigidity: Survey Evidence from European Firms," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 112(4), pages 884-910, December.
    3. Stephen Nickell & Glenda Quintini, 2003. "Nominal wage rigidity and the rate of inflation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(490), pages 762-781, October.
    4. Arminio Fraga & Ilan Goldfajn & André Minella, 2004. "Inflation Targeting in Emerging Market Economies," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2003, Volume 18, pages 365-416 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. M. Druant & S. Fabiani & Gabor Kezdi & Ana Lamo & R. Sabbatini & Fernando Martins, 2009. "How are Firms’ Wages and Prices Linked: Survey Evidence in Europe," Working Papers w200918, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    6. Boeri, Tito, 2012. "Setting the minimum wage," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 281-290.
    7. Stanley Fischer, 1988. "Real Balances, the Exchange Rate, and Indexation: Real Variables in Disinflation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 103(1), pages 27-49.
    8. Taylor, John B, 1979. "Staggered Wage Setting in a Macro Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(2), pages 108-113, May.
    9. George A. Akerlof & Janet L. Yellen, 1990. "The Fair Wage-Effort Hypothesis and Unemployment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 255-283.
    10. Hernando Vargas & Andrés González & Eliana González & José Vicente Romero & José Luis Eduardo Rojas, 2010. "Assessing inflationary pressures in Colombia," BIS Papers chapters,in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), Monetary policy and the measurement of inflation: prices, wages and expectations, volume 49, pages 129-171 Bank for International Settlements.
    11. Ana María Iregui B. & ligia Alba Melo Becerra & María Teresa Ramírez Giraldo, 2013. "RDownward Wage Rigidities and Other Firms Responses to an Economic Slowdown: Evidence from a Survey of Colombian Firms," Investigación Conjunta-Joint Research,in: Laura Inés D'Amato & Enrique López Enciso & María Teresa Ramírez Giraldo (ed.), Inflationary Dynamics, Persistence, and Prices and Wages Formation, edition 1, chapter 15, pages 403-449 Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, CEMLA.
    12. William T. Dickens & Lorenz Goette & Erica L. Groshen & Steinar Holden & Julian Messina & Mark E. Schweitzer & Jarkko Turunen & Melanie E. Ward, 2007. "How Wages Change: Micro Evidence from the International Wage Flexibility Project," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(2), pages 195-214, Spring.
    13. Mohammad Irfan, 2009. "Pakistan’s Wage Structure, during 1990-91–2006-07," Labor Economics Working Papers 22979, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
    14. George A. Akerlof, 1982. "Labor Contracts as Partial Gift Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 97(4), pages 543-569.
    15. Elsby, Michael W.L., 2009. "Evaluating the economic significance of downward nominal wage rigidity," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 154-169, March.
    16. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
    17. Agell, Jonas & Lundborg, Per, 1995. " Theories of Pay and Unemployment: Survey Evidence from Swedish Manufacturing Firms," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 97(2), pages 295-307, June.
    18. Galuscak, Kamil & Keeney, Mary & Nicolitsas, Daphne & Smets, Frank & Strzelecki, Pawel & Vodopivec, Matija, 2012. "The determination of wages of newly hired employees: Survey evidence on internal versus external factors," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 802-812.
    19. Esteban Jadresic, 1996. "Wage Indexation and the Cost of Disinflation," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 43(4), pages 796-825, December.
    20. Martin Neil Baily, 1974. "Wages and Employment under Uncertain Demand," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(1), pages 37-50.
    21. Edmund S. Phelps, 1968. "Money-Wage Dynamics and Labor-Market Equilibrium," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76, pages 678-678.
    22. David Genesove & Christopher Mayer, 2001. "Loss Aversion and Seller Behavior: Evidence from the Housing Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1233-1260.
    23. Andrew S. Caplin & Daniel F. Spulber, 1987. "Menu Costs and the Neutrality of Money," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(4), pages 703-725.
    24. Kenneth J. McLaughlin, 1999. "Are nominal wage changes skewed away from wage cuts?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 117-132.
    25. Choudhary, M. Ali & Naeem, Saima & Faheem, Abdul & Hanif, Nadim & Pasha, Farooq, 2011. "Formal sector price discoveries: preliminary results from a developing country," MPRA Paper 32368, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    26. Hervé Le Bihan & Jérémi Montornès & Thomas Heckel, 2012. "Sticky Wages: Evidence from Quarterly Microeconomic Data," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 1-32, July.
    27. Cecchetti, Stephen G, 1987. "Indexation and Incomes Policy: A Study of Wage Adjustment in Unionized Manufacturing," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 5(3), pages 391-412, July.
    28. Guillermo E. Perry & William F. Maloney & Omar S. Arias & Pablo Fajnzylber & Andrew D. Mason & Jaime Saavedra-Chanduvi, 2007. "Informality : Exit and Exclusion," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6730.
    29. Bertola, Giuseppe & Dabusinskas, Aurelijus & Hoeberichts, Marco & Izquierdo, Mario & Kwapil, Claudia & Montornès, Jeremi & Radowski, Daniel, 2012. "Price, wage and employment response to shocks: evidence from the WDN survey," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 783-791.
    30. Moser, Caroline O. N., 1978. "Informal sector or petty commodity production: Dualism or dependence in urban development?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 6(9-10), pages 1041-1064.
    31. Ramos, Raul & Duque, Juan C. & Surinach, Jordi, 2010. "Is the wage curve formal or informal? Evidence for Colombia," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 109(2), pages 63-65, November.
    32. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2005. "Nominal Rigidities and the Dynamic Effects of a Shock to Monetary Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 1-45, February.
    33. Josef Baumgartner & Claudia Kwapil & Johann Scharler, 2005. "The Price-Setting Behavior of Austrian Firms: Some Survey Evidence," Working Papers 100, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank).
    34. Zoega, Gylfi & Karlsson, Thorlakur, 2006. "Does wage compression explain rigid money wages?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 111-115, October.
    35. Nicoletta Batini & Paul Levine & Emanuela Lotti, 2011. "The Costs and Benefits of Informality," School of Economics Discussion Papers 0211, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
    36. M. Ali Choudhary & Saima Naeem & Abdul Faheem & Nadim Haneef & Farooq Pasha, 2011. "Formal Sector Price Discoveries: Results from a Developing Country," School of Economics Discussion Papers 1011, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
    37. Shapiro, Carl & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1984. "Equilibrium Unemployment as a Worker Discipline Device," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 433-444, June.
    38. Gray, Jo Anna, 1976. "Wage indexation: A macroeconomic approach," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 221-235, April.
    39. Mohammad Irfan, 2009. "Pakistan’s Wage Structure, during 1990-91–2006-07," PIDE-Working Papers 2009:54, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics.
    40. Stanley Fischer, 1984. "Real Balances, the Exchange Rate and Indexation: Real Variables in Disinflation," NBER Working Papers 1497, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    41. Carl M. Campbell III & Kunal S. Kamlani, 1997. "The Reasons for Wage Rigidity: Evidence from a Survey of Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(3), pages 759-789.
    42. Tobin, James, 1972. "Inflation and Unemployment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(1), pages 1-18, March.
    43. Lindbeck, Assar & Snower, Dennis J, 1988. "Cooperation, Harassment, and Involuntary Unemployment: An Insider-Outsider Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 167-188, March.
    44. Pedro Martins, 2005. "The Inter-Industry Wage Structure of U.S. Multinationals," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 10(1), pages 1-7.
    45. Eldar Shafir & Peter Diamond & Amos Tversky, 1997. "Money Illusion," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 341-374.
    46. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1974. "Alternative Theories of Wage Determination and Unemployment in LDC's: The Labor Turnover Model," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 88(2), pages 194-227.
    47. Frank Smets & Raf Wouters, 2003. "An Estimated Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium Model of the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1123-1175, September.
    48. Solow, Robert M., 1979. "Another possible source of wage stickiness," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 79-82.
    49. Sheshinski, Eytan & Weiss, Yoram, 1988. "Staggered and Synchronized Price Policies by Multiproduct Monopolies," Foerder Institute for Economic Research Working Papers 275448, Tel-Aviv University > Foerder Institute for Economic Research.
    50. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1984. "Theories of Wage Rigidity," NBER Working Papers 1442, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    51. Montornès, Jérémi & Sauner-Leroy, Jacques-Bernard, 2009. "Wage-setting behavior in France: additional evidence from an ad-hoc survey," Working Paper Series 1102, European Central Bank.
    52. Weiss, Andrew W, 1980. "Job Queues and Layoffs in Labor Markets with Flexible Wages," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(3), pages 526-538, June.
    53. McLaughlin, Kenneth J., 1994. "Rigid wages?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 383-414, December.
    54. Esteban Jadresic, 1996. "Wage Indexation and the Cost of Disinflation," IMF Working Papers 96/48, International Monetary Fund.
    55. Irineu E de Carvalho Filho & Marcello M. Estevão, 2012. "Institutions, Informality, and Wage Flexibility; Evidence From Brazil," IMF Working Papers 12/84, International Monetary Fund.
    56. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard, 1986. "Fairness as a Constraint on Profit Seeking: Entitlements in the Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 728-741, September.
    57. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1982. "Involuntary unemployment and inventories: An exploratory model of equilibrium and pure competition," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 253-275.
    58. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
    59. Agell, Jonas & Bennmarker, Helge, 2007. "Wage incentives and wage rigidity: A representative view from within," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 347-369, June.
    60. Fernando Lefort & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, 2002. "Indexation, Inflation and Monetary Policy: An Overview," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Fernando Lefort & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Serie (ed.), Indexation, Inflation and MOnetary Policy, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 1, pages 001-018 Central Bank of Chile.
    61. Katharine G. Abraham & John C. Haltiwanger, 1995. "Real Wages and the Business Cycle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(3), pages 1215-1264, September.
    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. M. Ali Choudhary & Farooq Pasha, 2013. "The RBC View of Pakistan: A Declaration of Stylized Facts and Essential Models," School of Economics Discussion Papers 0413, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
    2. Ahmed, Waqas & Choudhary, M. Ali & Khan, Sajawal & Naeem, Saima & Zoega, Gylfi, 2014. "Determinants of wage stickiness in a developing economy," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 296-304.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Wage rigidity; structured interviews;

    JEL classification:

    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit
    • F4 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development

    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:sbp:wpaper:55. 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: (Faisal Saleem). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/sbpgvpk.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 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.

    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.