nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2017‒01‒22
two papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la República

  1. Wage Contracts and Workplace Misbehaviors By Jeffery Flory; Andreas Leibbrandt; John List
  2. Do State Laws Protecting Older Workers from Discrimination Reduce Age Discrimination in Hiring? Experimental (and Nonexperimental) Evidence By David Neumark; Ian Burn; Patrick Button; Nanneh Chehras

  1. By: Jeffery Flory; Andreas Leibbrandt; John List
    Abstract: Workplace misbehaviors are often governed by explicit monitoring and strict punishment. Such enforcement activities can serve to lessen worker productivity and harm worker morale. We take a different approach to curbing worker misbehavior-bonuses. Examining more than 6500 donor phone calls across more than 80 workers, we use a natural field experiment to investigate how different wage contracts influence workers' propensity to break workplace rules in harmful ways. Our findings show that even though standard relative performance pay contracts, relative to a fixed wage scheme, increase productivity, they have a dark side: they cause considerable cheating and sabotage of co-workers. Yet, even in such environments, by including an unexpected bonus, the employer can substantially curb worker misbehavior. In this manner, our findings reveal how employers can effectively leverage bonuses to eliminate undesired behaviors induced by performance pay contracts.
    Date: 2016
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:feb:natura:00583&r=ltv
  2. By: David Neumark (University of California-Irvine); Ian Burn (University of California-Irvine); Patrick Button (Tulane University); Nanneh Chehras (University of California-Irvine)
    Abstract: We provide evidence from a field experiment — a correspondence study — on age discrimination in hiring for retail sales jobs. We collect experimental data in all 50 states and then relate measured age discrimination — the difference in callback rates between old and young applicants — to variation across states in antidiscrimination laws offering protections to older workers that are stronger than the federal age and disability discrimination laws. We do a similar analysis for nonexperimental data on differences across states in hiring rates of older versus younger workers. The experimental evidence points consistently to evidence of hiring discrimination against older men and more so against older women. However, the evidence on the relationship between hiring discrimination against older workers and state variation in age and disability discrimination laws is not so clear; at a minimum, there is not a compelling case that stronger state protections reduce hiring discrimination against older workers. In contrast, the nonexperimental evidence suggests that stronger disability discrimination protections increase the relative hiring of older workers.
    Date: 2016–09
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:mrr:papers:wp349&r=ltv

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