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Labour Market Institutions and the Personal Distribution of Income in the OECD

Daniele Checchi () and Cecilia Garcia-Penalosa ()

No 1608, CESifo Working Paper Series from CESifo

Abstract: We examine the determinants of differences across countries and over time in the distribution of personal incomes in the OECD. The Gini coefficient of personal incomes can be expressed as a function of the wage differential, the labour share, and the unemployment rate, hence labour market institutions are an essential determinant of the distribution of income, although the sign of their impact is ambiguous. We use a panel of OECD countries for the period 1970-96 to examine these effects. We find, first, that the labour share remains an important determinant of overall inequality patterns, and, second, that stronger unions and a more generous unemployment benefit tend to reduce income inequality. High capital-labour ratios also emerge as a strong equalising factor, which has in part offset the impact of increasing wage inequality on the US distribution of personal incomes.

Keywords: income inequality; labour share; trade unions (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D31 D33 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2005
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-lab
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Related works:
Journal Article: Labour Market Institutions and the Personal Distribution of Income in the OECD (2010) Downloads
Working Paper: Labour market institutions and the personal distribution of income in the OECD (2008) Downloads
Working Paper: Labour Market Institutions and the Personal Distribution of Income in the OECD (2005) Downloads
Working Paper: Labour Market Institutions and the Personal Distribution of Income in the OECD (2005) Downloads
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