IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/zbw/iwhdps/212020.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Competition, cost structure, and labour leverage: Evidence from the U.S. airline industry

Author

Listed:
  • Wagner, Konstantin

Abstract

I study the effect of increasing competition on financial performance through labour leverage. To capture competition, I exploit variation in product market contestability in the U.S. airline industry. First, I find that increasing competitive pressure leads to increasing labour leverage, proxied by labour share. This explains the decrease in operating profitability through labour rigidities. Second, by exploiting variation in human capital specificity, I show that contestability of product markets induces labour market contestability. Whereas affected firms might experience more stress through higher wages or loss of skilled human capital, more mobile employee groups benefit from competitions through higher labour shares.

Suggested Citation

  • Wagner, Konstantin, 2020. "Competition, cost structure, and labour leverage: Evidence from the U.S. airline industry," IWH Discussion Papers 21/2020, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:iwhdps:212020
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/226186/1/1738248399.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Xavier Gabaix & Augustin Landier, 2008. "Why has CEO Pay Increased So Much?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(1), pages 49-100.
    2. Connan Snider & Jonathan W. Williams, 2015. "Barriers to Entry in the Airline Industry: A Multidimensional Regression-Discontinuity Analysis of AIR-21," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1002-1022, December.
    3. Baumol, William J, 1982. "Contestable Markets: An Uprising in the Theory of Industry Structure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(1), pages 1-15, March.
    4. Matthias Efing & Harald Hau & Patrick Kampkktter & Jean-Charles Rochet, 2018. "Bank Bonus Pay as a Risk Sharing Contract," Working Papers hal-01847442, HAL.
    5. Brent Neiman, 2014. "The Global Decline of the Labor Share," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(1), pages 61-103.
    6. Austan Goolsbee & Chad Syverson, 2008. "How Do Incumbents Respond to the Threat of Entry? Evidence from the Major Airlines," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1611-1633.
    7. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Gerard A. Pfann, 1996. "Adjustment Costs in Factor Demand," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(3), pages 1264-1292, September.
    8. Roberto Marfè, 2017. "Income Insurance and the Equilibrium Term Structure of Equity," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 72(5), pages 2073-2130, October.
    9. Efraim Benmelech & Nittai K. Bergman & Hyunseob Kim, 2018. "Strong Employers and Weak Employees: How Does Employer Concentration Affect Wages?," Working Papers 18-15, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    10. Berry, Steven T, 1992. "Estimation of a Model of Entry in the Airline Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(4), pages 889-917, July.
    11. Gerard Hoberg & Gordon Phillips, 2016. "Text-Based Network Industries and Endogenous Product Differentiation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 124(5), pages 1423-1465.
    12. Borenstein, Severin & Rose, Nancy L, 1994. "Competition and Price Dispersion in the U.S. Airline Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(4), pages 653-683, August.
    13. Donangelo, Andres & Gourio, François & Kehrig, Matthias & Palacios, Miguel, 2019. "The cross-section of labor leverage and equity returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 132(2), pages 497-518.
    14. Vicente Cuñat & Maria Guadalupe, 2009. "Globalization and the Provision of Incentives inside the Firm: The Effect of Foreign Competition," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(2), pages 179-212, April.
    15. Ms. Mitali Das & Weicheng Lian & Zsoka Koczan & Mai Chi Dao, 2017. "Why Is Labor Receiving a Smaller Share of Global Income? Theory and Empirical Evidence," IMF Working Papers 2017/169, International Monetary Fund.
    16. Malcolm Baker & Jeffrey Wurgler, 2002. "Market Timing and Capital Structure," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 1-32, February.
    17. Gerard Hoberg & Gordon Phillips & Nagpurnanand Prabhala, 2014. "Product Market Threats, Payouts, and Financial Flexibility," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 69(1), pages 293-324, February.
    18. Robert E. Lucas & Jr., 1967. "Adjustment Costs and the Theory of Supply," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 321-321.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Gianpaolo Parise, 2016. "Threat of entry and debt maturity: evidence from airlines," BIS Working Papers 556, Bank for International Settlements.
    2. Parise, Gianpaolo, 2018. "Threat of entry and debt maturity: Evidence from airlines," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 127(2), pages 226-247.
    3. Fukui, Hideki, 2019. "How do slot restrictions affect airfares? New evidence from the US airline industry," Economics of Transportation, Elsevier, vol. 17(C), pages 51-71.
    4. Claudio Agostini, 2005. "El Mercado de Transporte Aéreo: Lecciones para Chile de una Revisión de la Literatura," ILADES-UAH Working Papers inv163, Universidad Alberto Hurtado/School of Economics and Business.
    5. Ivana Tománková, 2017. "Determinants of Route Presence in the EU Airline Industry," Prague Economic Papers, Prague University of Economics and Business, vol. 2017(1), pages 90-102.
    6. Patrick Dennis & Kristopher S. Gerardi & Carola Schenone, 2019. "Common Ownership Does Not Have Anti-Competitive Effects in the Airline Industry," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2019-15, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    7. Gil, Ricard & Kim, Myongjin, 2021. "Does competition increase quality? Evidence from the US airline industry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 77(C).
    8. Booth, Laurence & Wang, Mengying & Zhou, Jun, 2019. "Import competition and financial flexibility: Evidence from corporate payout policy," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 382-396.
    9. Campos, Javier & Jiménez, Juan Luis & Perdiguero, Jordi, 2015. "Contestability and public concern about airfares: A case study in the Canary Islands," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 180-186.
    10. Kristopher S. Gerardi & Adam Hale Shapiro, 2007. "The effects of competition on price dispersion in the airline industry: a panel analysis," Working Papers 07-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    11. Chao Ma, 2019. "Does capital structure differently affect incumbents' responses to entry threat and actual entry?," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(4), pages 585-613, November.
    12. Ivana Tománková, . "Determinants of Route Presence in the EU Airline Industry," Prague Economic Papers, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 0, pages 1-13.
    13. Yang Pan & Peng Huang & Anandasivam Gopal, 2019. "Storm Clouds on the Horizon? New Entry Threats and R&D Investments in the U.S. IT Industry," Information Systems Research, INFORMS, vol. 30(2), pages 540-562, June.
    14. Gilbert Cette & Lorraine Koehl & Thomas Philippon, 2019. "The Labor Share in the Long Term: A Decline?," Economie et Statistique / Economics and Statistics, Institut National de la Statistique et des Études Économiques (INSEE), issue 510-511-5, pages 35-51.
    15. Sheikh, Shahbaz, 2018. "The impact of market competition on the relation between CEO power and firm innovation," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 36-50.
    16. Fabbri, Francesca & Marin, Dalia, 2012. "What Explains the Rise in CEO Pay in Germany? A Panel Data Analysis for 1977-2009," CEPR Discussion Papers 8879, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    17. Charles Ka Yui Leung & Joe Cho Yiu Ng & Edward Tang, 2020. "Why is the Hong Kong Housing Market Unaffordable? Some Stylized Facts and Estimations," Globalization Institute Working Papers 380, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
    18. Kai Huschelrath & Kathrin Muller, 2014. "The Value Of Bluer Skies. – How Much Do Consumers Gain From Entry By Jetblue Airways In Long-Haul U.S. Airline Markets?," Articles, International Journal of Transport Economics, vol. 41(1).
    19. Fernández-Villaverde, Jesús & Mandelman, Federico & Yu, Yang & Zanetti, Francesco, 2021. "The “Matthew effect” and market concentration: Search complementarities and monopsony power," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 121(C), pages 62-90.
    20. Maria José Gil-Moltó & Claudio A. Piga, 2007. "Entry and Exit in a Liberalised Market," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, vol. 97(1), pages 3-38, January-F.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    competition; labour leverage; labour share; threat of entry;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G39 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Other
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • L93 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Air Transportation

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:zbw:iwhdps:212020. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/iwhhhde.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 bibliographic 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.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/iwhhhde.html .

    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.