Ageing, productivity and wages in Austria

Mahlberg, Bernhard and Freund, Inga and Crespo Cuaresma, Jesus ORCID: and Prskawetz, Alexia (2013) Ageing, productivity and wages in Austria. Labour Economics, 22. pp. 5-15. ISSN 0927-5371

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Current demographic developments in industrialized countries and their consequences for workforce ageing challenge the sustainability of intergenerational transfers and economic growth. A shrinking share of the young workforce will have to support a growing share of elderly, non-working people. Therefore, the productivity of the workforce is central to a sustainable economic future. Using a new matched employeremployee panel dataset for Austrian firms for the period 2002-2005, we study the relationship between the age structure of employees, labour productivity and wages. These data allow us to account, simultaneously, for both socio-demographic characteristics of employees and firm heterogeneity, in order to explain labour productivity and earnings. Our results indicate that firm productivity is not negatively related to the share of older employees it employs. We also find no evidence for overpayment of older employees. Our results do not show any association between wages and the share of older employees. Furthermore, we find a negative relationship between the share of young employees and labour productivity as well as wages, which is more prevalent in the industry and construction sector. (authors' abstract)

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The authors would like to thank Statistics Austria for setting up the data used in this study as well as for valuable support. Please note that Statistics Austria holds the copyright for the data used. The authors appreciate valuable comments on earlier versions of this paper from two anonymous referees, Thomas Fent, Elsa Fontainha, Christian Göbel, Franz Xaver Hof, Helmut Hofer, Stefan Staubli and Thomas Zwick as well as the participants of the 6th European Workshop on Labour Markets and Demographic Change, the Annual Meeting of the Austrian Economic Association (NOeG 2011), the XII European Workshop on Efficiency and Productivity Analysis (EWEPA 2011), the Workshop on Ageing, Health & Productivity of the World Demographic & Ageing Forum, European Population Conference (EPC 2012) and Annual Conference of the European Society for Population Economics (ESPE 2012). The authors acknowledge funding from the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) under project number P21475-G16. The usual disclaimer applies. Open Access funded by Austrian Science Fund (FWF).
Keywords: age-productivity/-wage profile / employer-employee data / sector affiliation
Classification Codes: JEL J14, J24, J82
Divisions: Departments > Volkswirtschaft > Makroökonomie
Version of the Document: Published
Variance from Published Version: None
Depositing User: Elena Simukovic
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2015 13:14
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2020 14:43
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