The effect of firm-level contracts on the structure of wages: evidence from matched ..
Sara de la Rica
In Spain, as in several other European countries, sectoral bargaining agreements are automatically extended to cover all firms in an industry. Employers and employees can also negotiate firm-specific contracts. We use a large matched employer-employee data set to study the effects of firm-level contracting on the structure of wages. We estimate conventional wage determination models and a richer set of models that control for the characteristics of coworkers and the probability the workplace is covered by a firm-level contract. Our estimates suggest that firm-level contracting is associated with a 5-10 percent wage premium, with larger premiums for more highly paid workers. Although we cannot decisively test between alternative explanations for the firm-level contracting premium, workers with firm-specific contracts have significantly longer job tenure, suggesting that the premium is at least partially a noncompetitive phenomenon.
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