Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Minimum Wage

Philippe Askenazy refutes the idea that there is an "optimum level of wage inequality" and hence that a high minimum wage (such as the French SMIC) is a disincentive to work. His article is full of interesting information. For instance, he offers these data to show that the French are not particularly egalitarian compared to their European neighbors (though they are, of course, compared to the US, as I discussed yesterday). The Finns, the Danes, and the Swedes have the most egalitarian wage scales:

Tableau 1 : Ratios de dispersion des rémunérations brutes dans les entreprises de plus de 10 salariés de l’industrie et les services de NACE C-K en 2002.


D5/D1D9/D5
Allemagne1,81,8
Irlande1,82,2
Luxembourg1,82
France1,62
Belgique1,61,6
UK1,62
Espagne1,62
Pays-Bas1,61,8
Autriche1,52
Grèce1,51,8
Italie1,41,8
Danemark1,31,6
Finlande1,31,5
Suède1,31,6

Source : European Commission, Employment in Europe 2005 (pdf)
D1, D5 et D9 désignent les premier, cinquième (ou médian) et dernier déciles des rémunérations annuelles.


For comparison, the American ratios are 2.1 and 2.31 (for data on changes over time, see article).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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