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Rent-sharing : Does the Bargaining Regime Make a Difference? Theory and Empirical Evidence

Listed author(s):
  • Gürtzgen, Nicole

This paper analyses whether wages in Germany respond to firm-specific profitability conditions. Particular emphasis lies on the question of whether the extent of rent-sharing varies across different systems of wage determination. Those may be categorised into sector-specific wage agreements, firm-specific wage agreements and wage determination without any bargaining coverage. To derive testable hypotheses, we set up a theoretical model that analyses the sensitivity of wages to firm-specific conditions under different wage setting structures. The hypotheses are tested using an establishment-level panel data set from the mining and manufacturing sector. The results of the empirical analysis generally suggest that rent-sharing is present in Germany. However, the extent of rent-sharing is found to be significantly lower in establishments that are subject to a collective wage agreement - irrespective of whether the agreement is industry- or firm-specific. While pooled OLS estimates yield positive estimates of the rent-sharing coefficient in establishments that are covered by a collective contract, SYS-GMM-estimates accounting for unobserved heterogeneity and endogeneity of rents point to a rent-sharing coefficient of zero.

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Paper provided by ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research in its series ZEW Discussion Papers with number 05-15.

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Date of creation: 2005
Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:2905
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  1. Joop Hartog & Edwin Leuven & Coen N. Teulings, 2000. "Wages and the Bargaining Regime in a Corporist Setting: The Netherlands," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 00-013/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  2. Wolfgang Ochel, 2003. "Decentralising Wage Bargaining in Germany – A Way to Increase Employment?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1069, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Olaf H¸bler & Uwe Jirjahn, 2003. "Works Councils and Collective Bargaining in Germany: The Impact on Productivity and Wages," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 50(4), pages 471-491, 09.
  4. John M. Abowd & Francis Kramarz & David Margolis, 1999. "High Wage Workers and High Wage Firms," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00353892, HAL.
  5. Hildreth, Andrew K G & Oswald, Andrew J, 1997. "Rent-Sharing and Wages: Evidence from Company and Establishment Panels," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(2), pages 318-337, April.
  6. John M. Abowd & Thomas Lemieux, 1991. "The Effects of Product Market Competition on Collective Bargaining Agreements: The Case of Foreign Competition in Canada," NBER Working Papers 3808, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Holmlund, B. & Zetterberg, J., 1989. "Insider Effects In Wage Determination: Evidence From Five Countries," Papers 1989a, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
  8. Dowrick, Steve, 1993. "Enterprise Bargaining, Union Structure and Wages," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 69(207), pages 393-404, December.
  9. Schmidt, Christoph M & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 1991. "Work Characteristics, Firm Size and Wages," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(4), pages 705-710, November.
  10. Fitzenberger, Bernd & Franz, Wolfgang, 1999. "Industry-level wage bargaining : a partial rehabilitation ; the German experience," ZEW Discussion Papers 99-33, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  11. Haucap, Justus & Wey, Christian, 2003. "Unionization Structures and Innovation Incentives," CEPR Discussion Papers 4079, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Cardoso, Ana Rute & Portugal, Pedro, 2004. "Bargained Wages, Wage Drift and the Design of the Wage-Setting System," CEPR Discussion Papers 4405, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. M Arellano & O Bover, 1990. "Another Look at the Instrumental Variable Estimation of Error-Components Models," CEP Discussion Papers dp0007, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  14. Margolis, D.N. & Salvanes, K.G., 2001. "Do Firms Really Share Rents with Their Workers?," Papers 11/2001, Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration-.
  15. Arai, Mahmood, 1999. "Wages, Profits and Capital Intensity: Evidence from Matched Worker-Firm Data," Research Papers in Economics 1999:3, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  16. L Christofides & A Oswald, 1991. "Real Wage Determination and Rent-Sharing in Collective Bargaining Agreements," CEP Discussion Papers dp0042, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  17. Oi, Walter Y. & Idson, Todd L., 1999. "Firm size and wages," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 33, pages 2165-2214 Elsevier.
  18. Van Reenen, John, 1994. "The Creation and Capture of Rents: Wages and Innovation in a Panel of UK Companies," CEPR Discussion Papers 1071, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Franz Wolfgang & Pfeiffer Friedhelm, 2003. "Zur ökonomischen Rationalität von Lohnrigiditäten aus der Sicht von Unternehmen / The Rationale for Wage Rigidity: Employers' Viewpoint," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 223(1), pages 23-57, February.
  20. Addison, John T & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2001. "Work Councils in Germany: Their Effects on Establishment Performance," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(4), pages 659-694, October.
  21. Soskice, David, 1990. "Wage Determination: The Changing Role of Institutions in Advanced Industrialized Countries," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(4), pages 36-61, Winter.
  22. Steve Bond, 2002. "Dynamic panel data models: a guide to microdata methods and practice," CeMMAP working papers CWP09/02, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  23. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
  24. Corneo, Giacomo, 1995. "National wage bargaining in an internationally integrated product market," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 503-520, September.
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