- Starting wages respond to employer's risk
- Number of pages
- Amsterdam: Faculteit Economie en Bedrijfskunde
- Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper
- Volume | Edition (Serie)
- Document type
- Working paper
- Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB)
- Amsterdam School of Economics Research Institute (ASE-RI)
Firms hiring fresh graduates face uncertainty on the future productivity of workers. Theory suggests that starting wages reflect this, with lower pay for greater uncertainty. We use the dispersion of exam grades within a field of education as an indicator of the unobserved heterogeneity that employers face. We find solid evidence that starting wages are lower if the variance of exam grades is higher and higher if the skew is higher: employers shift the cost of productivity risk to new hires, but pay for the opportunity to catch a really good worker. Estimating the extent of risk cost sharing between firm and worker shows that shifting to workers is larger in the market sector than in the public sector and diminishes with experience.
Keywords: wages; risk compensation; ability; incomplete information
If you believe that digital publication of certain material infringes any of your rights or (privacy) interests, please let the Library know, stating your reasons. In case of a legitimate complaint, the Library will make the material inaccessible and/or remove it from the website. Please Ask the Library, or send a letter to: Library of the University of Amsterdam, Secretariat, Singel 425, 1012 WP Amsterdam, The Netherlands. You will be contacted as soon as possible.