Labor and the Economy

Labor and the Economy

1st Edition - January 1, 1984

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  • Author: Howard M. Wachtel
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483263410

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Description

Labor and the Economy provides the theory, empirical studies of the labor force, and public policies that flow from the theories and empirical studies in the field of labor economics. The book focuses on economic issues and debates. Topics discussed in the text include the history of labor economics; the microeconomic foundations of labor economics; the interaction between labor's effect on the macroeconomy and the macroeconomy's effect on labor; and the interrelation of trade unions with other economic institutions. Graduate and undergraduate students of economics as well as practicing economists will find the book a good reference material.

Table of Contents


  • Contents

    Preface

    1. Labor and the Economy

    Aims of the Book

    Recent History of Labor Economics

    Labor Economics after World War II: The High Wage Economy

    The 1960s

    The 1970s

    Labor Economics Today

    Plan of the Book

    2. The Labor Force and the Economy

    Labor Markets and the Economy

    The Labor Force

    Unemployment

    Demographic Composition of the Labor Force

    The Changing Structure of Employment in the American Economy

    Union Membership

    Summary

    Part I Labor and the Microeconomy

    A. Theory of Wages

    3. Wage Theory: Labor Demand

    Neoclassical Wage Theory: A First Glimpse

    The General Nature of Labor Supply and Demand

    Demand for Labor in the Firm: Initial Observations

    Combining Labor with Capital: The Law of Diminishing Returns

    The Marginal Product of Labor

    The Firm's Demand for Labor: Technology and Product Markets

    The Level of Employment in the Firm

    The Marginal Revenue Products and Salaries of Professional Basketball Players

    Wage Changes and Employment Changes: The Elasticity of Demand for Labor

    Applications of the Elasticity of Labor Demand

    Changes in the Demand for Labor

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    4. Wage Theory: Labor Supply

    Labor Supply: Hours of Work

    The Wage and Hours of Work

    Labor Time Supplied to the Market by the Household

    Income and Substitution Effects in the Household's Labor Supply Decision

    Perspective on the Backward-Bending Supply Segment

    Hours of Work in the American Economy

    Elasticity of Labor Supply

    Income Maintenance Experiments and Labor Supply

    Labor Force Participation Rates

    The Quality of Labor Supply: Human Capital

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    Appendix: The Income and Substitution Effects and Household Labor Supply

    5. Wage Determination and Market Structure

    Wage Determination in Perfectly Competitive Markets

    The Cambridge Critique: Heterogeneity in the Labor Market

    Wage Determination in a Perfectly Competitive Labor Market

    Observation and Interpretation: Wage Determination in Perfect Competition

    Imperfect Competition and Wage-Employment Determination

    Oligopoly and Wage-Employment Determination

    Monopsony and Wage-Employment Determination

    Monopsony and the Minimum Wage

    Market Structure and Wage-Employment Determination

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    6. Trade Unions and Wage Determination

    Trade Union Membership in the United States

    The Trade Union and Its Goals

    Institutional Theory and Wage Determination

    The Trade Union as an Economic Institution

    Bargaining Model of Wage Determination

    Collective Bargaining and Wage Determination

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    7. The Impact of Trade Unions on Wages

    Methodological Problems

    Wage Differentials for Union and Nonunion Workers over Time

    The Impact of Trade Unions on Wages at a Fixed Point in Time

    The Magnitude of Trade Union Impacts on Wages

    The Spillover Effect and Pattern Bargaining

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    B. Labor Markets and Individual Incomes

    8. Poverty and Inequality in the American economy

    Poverty: Meaning and Measurement

    Counting the Poor

    The Incidence of Poverty

    Critics of the Official Poverty Measure

    Inequality in Income and Wealth

    Some Observations on the Distribution of Wealth and Income

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    9. The Functional Distribution of Income

    Labor and Capital Shares of the National Income

    Income Inequality and the Functional Distribution of Income

    Neoclassical Theory of the Functional Distribution of Income

    The Elasticity of Substitution

    Monopoly Power and the Functional Distribution of Income

    The Functional Distribution of Income over the Business Cycle

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    10. Theory of Human Capital

    Investment in Human Capital

    Individual Investment in Human Capital

    Human Capital Investment by the Firm

    Public Investment in Human Capital

    Investment in Human Capital and Individual Incomes

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    11. Labor Market Structures

    Structural Perspective on Poverty and Inequality

    The Relationship between Poverty and Work

    The Structure of Labor Markets and the Working Poor

    Employment at Low Wages

    Dual Labor Markets and Poverty

    Policy Implications of Labor Market Structure Theories

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    12. The Economics of Discrimination

    Racial Inequalities

    Sex Inequalities

    Income Inequalities and Educational Inequalities

    Theories of Discrimination

    Public Policy and Economic Discrimination

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    Part II. Labor and the Macroeconomy

    13. Unemployment: Meaning and Measurement

    The Labor Force in the American Economy

    Measuring Unemployment

    Alternative Measures of Unemployment

    Measuring the Severity of Unemployment

    Unemployment Flows

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    14. Unemployment: Causes and Policy Responses

    Neoclassical Theory of Unemployment

    Job-Search Theories of Unemployment

    The Natural Rate of Unemployment

    Keynesian Aggregate Demand Theories of Unemployment

    Theory of Structural Unemployment

    Dual-Labor-Market Theory of Unemployment

    Explanations of Unemployment: An Assessment

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    15. Inflation: Meaning and Measurement

    Measuring Inflation

    The Consumer Price Index since 1929

    Inflation and Income Distribution

    Inflation and the Standard of Living of the American Worker

    Inflation, Productivity, and Unit Labor Costs

    Critique of the Way Inflation Is Measured

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    16. Inflation: Causes and Policy Responses

    Excess Demand Inflation

    Cost-Push Inflation

    The Phillips Curve: Inflation-Unemployment Trade-off

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    17. Stagflation

    The Anatomy of Stagflation

    Theory of Stagflation: Markup Pricing and Target Rates of Return

    Stagflation and the Structure of the Labor Market

    Expectations and Stagflation

    Stagflation Policy

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    18. Wage-Price Policy

    The Kennedy Guideposts

    Nixon's New Economic Policy

    The Carter Years

    Wage-Price Policies in the 1980s

    Lessons from Our Experience with Wage-Price Policies

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    Part III. Labor and Economic Institutions

    19. The Evolution of American Unions

    Institutional Premise of Neoclassical Marginal Productivity Theory

    Prerevolutionary Conditions of Work

    The Emerging Economy: Labor from the Revolution to the Civil War

    The End of the Age of Innocence: Civil War to the American Federation of Labor

    The Rise of Industrial Unionism: From 1900 to the Founding of the CIO

    The Emergence of the CIO: 1935-1955

    The Merged AFL-CIO: 1956 to the Present

    The History of Work

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    20. Industrial Relations in the United States

    The Nature of an Industrial Relations System

    How Trade Unions Gain Recognition

    The Collective Bargaining Process

    The Content of Collective Bargaining Agreements

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    21. Industrial Relations Law

    The Conspiracy Doctrine: 1806-1880

    The Injunction: 1880-1930

    Trade Unions and Congressional Antitrust Law

    The New Deal Period

    Taft-Hartley Act

    Landrum-Griffin Act

    Labor Law Reform

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    22. The Future of Industrial Relations

    Concession Bargaining

    Robotization

    Unions and Investments of Pension Funds

    Public Employee Unionization

    The Davis-Bacon Act

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    Part IV. Labor and Public Policy

    23. Minimum Wages

    Minimum Wage Laws in the United States

    Characteristics of Minimum Wage Workers

    Wage Theory and Minimum Wages: Perfect Competition

    Wage Theory and Minimum Wages: Monopsony

    Minimum Wages and Youth Unemployment

    Public Policy and the Minimum Wage: Youth Subminimum

    Public Policy and the Minimum Wage: Indexation

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    24. Income Security, Health, and Safety

    Social Security

    Unemployment Compensation

    Workers' Compensation

    Black Lung Disease

    Occupational Safety and Health Act

    Summary

    Study Questions

    Further Reading

    Index

Product details

  • No. of pages: 556
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Academic Press 1984
  • Published: January 1, 1984
  • Imprint: Academic Press
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483263410

About the Author

Howard M. Wachtel

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