This study analyzes the effect of labor unions on wages and productivity for different industries. This has been done by extending the data samples from the textile industry to metal, electronics and chemical industries.
According to the survey on prevailing wage by occupation provided by the Ministry of Labor in 1980, academic background, work experience, years of employment and age of employees in corporations with labor unions were generally higher, on average, than those of employees without labor unions in textile, metal, electronics and chemical industries. In larger companies the labor unions were found to be more organized.
Between companies with labor unions and companies without labor unions, we considered the differences of employees’ characteristics such as academic background and work experience, and companies’ characteristics such as size and location. We theorized that labor unions influenced wages for employees with the same characteristics, working at companies of same size and location. Microeconomic analysis showed a relative wage effect on wage level by labor unions of approximately 7.3 percent for textile industries in terms of hourly wage, about 7.7 percent for chemical industries and almost zeros percent for metal and electronics industries. By occupation and gender, the effect on wage by labor unions was greater for women than men, and greater in general for office employees than production employees. There was a difference among industries, but there was a wage difference depending on the presence of a labor union: about four to five percent for male production employees, five to eight percent for female production employees, six to 15 percent for male office employees and nine to 17 percent for female office employees.
Effect on relative wages from labor unions was different depending on the size of the company. For textile, metal, and electronics industries, the effect on wages by labor unions of large companies (over 500 employees)was the greatest, and the effect was minimal or not present in smaller companies. However, the chemical industry was exceptional. Wage differences with or without labor unions of medium sized companies (100 to 499 employees) was the greatest for women, and small companies (less than 10 employees) for men. For wage differences with or without labor unions, most of difference comes from regular wages in case of women, and special wages and overtime pay in case of men.
Effect analysis on productivity by labor unions cannot be evaluated due to the limitation of data. Therefore, this study used an indirect method to determine if there was a positive effect on wage from labor unions. Labor unions seem to contribute to long service and decrease propensity for job change, which provide opportunities to improve productivity. When evaluating wage functions after subtracting this contribution, effect on wages by labor unions is statistically close to zero. Since there are variables apart from the ones discussed in this research, contribution of productivity by labor unions cannot be conclusively declared. Therefore, there should be a more accurate empirical analysis of effect on wage level and difference in productivity in Korea.
노동조합이 임금 및 생산성에 미친 영향분석(Effect analysis of labor union on wage and productivity)
섬유, 금속·전자, 화학산업을 중심으로
|Subject Country||South Korea(Asia and Pacific)|
|Subject||Economy < Macroeconomics
Industry and Technology < General
Social Development < Employment
|Holding||KDI; KDI School|