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Comment on 'minimum wages for Ronald McDonald monopsonies: a theory of monopsonistic competition'


  • Frank Walsh


Bhaskar and To (1999) develop a model of monopsonistic competition and solve explicitly for equilibrium. While a minimum wage set just above the unconstrained optimum leads firms to increase employment it also causes firm exit as profits fall. In this note I show that the employment and welfare effects of the minimum wage which Bhaskar and To had thought to be ambiguous when firm exit was accounted for are in fact unambiguously positive. The model can be adjusted so that the original ambiguous employment effect results. A decomposition is developed which allows us to calculate the long run employment effect.

Suggested Citation

  • Frank Walsh, 2003. "Comment on 'minimum wages for Ronald McDonald monopsonies: a theory of monopsonistic competition'," Open Access publications 10197/8050, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucn:oapubs:10197/8050

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Barry T. Hirsch, 2004. "Reconsidering Union Wage Effects: Surveying New Evidence on an Old Topic," Journal of Labor Research, Transaction Publishers, vol. 25(2), pages 233-266, April.
    2. Koevoets, Wim, 2007. "Union wage premiums in Great Britain: Coverage or membership?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 53-71, January.
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    4. Freeman, Richard B, 1984. "Longitudinal Analyses of the Effects of Trade Unions," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(1), pages 1-26, January.
    5. David G. Blanchflower & Alex Bryson, 2010. "The Wage Impact of Trade Unions in the UK Public and Private Sectors," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 77(305), pages 92-109, January.
    6. Mellow, Wesley S, 1981. "Unionism and Wages: A Longitudinal Analysis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 43-52, February.
    7. Card, David, 1996. "The Effect of Unions on the Structure of Wages: A Longitudinal Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 957-979, July.
    8. Lixin Cai & C. Jeffrey Waddoups, 2011. "Union Wage Effects in Australia: Evidence from Panel Data," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 49(Supplemen), pages 279-305, July.
    9. George Jakubson, 1991. "Estimation and Testing of the Union Wage Effect Using Panel Data," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(5), pages 971-991.
    10. Barry T. Hirsch & Edward J. Schumacher, 1998. "Unions, Wages, and Skills," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(1), pages 201-219.
    11. Robinson, Chris, 1989. "The Joint Determination of Union Status and Union Wage Effects: Some Tests of Alternative Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(3), pages 639-667, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Strobl, Eric & Walsh, Frank, 2016. "Monopsony, minimum wages and migration," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 221-237.
    2. Webber, Douglas A., 2015. "Firm market power and the earnings distribution," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 123-134.
    3. Leo Kaas & Paul Madden, 2010. "Minimum wages and welfare in a Hotelling duopsony," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 43(2), pages 167-188, May.
    4. Strobl, Eric & Walsh, Frank, 2011. "The ambiguous effect of minimum wages on hours," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 218-228, April.
    5. Alan Manning & Ted To, 2002. "Oligopsony and Monopsonistic Competition in Labor Markets," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(2), pages 155-174, Spring.
    6. repec:ipg:wpaper:2014-069 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Moser, Christoph & Stähler, Nikolai, 2009. "Spillover effects of minimum wages in a two-sector search model," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2009,01, Deutsche Bundesbank.

    More about this item


    Monopsony; Minimum wages; Employment;

    JEL classification:

    • J42 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Monopsony; Segmented Labor Markets
    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General


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