Firm Dynamics and the Minimum Wage: A Putty-Clay Approach
61 Pages Posted: 19 Dec 2013
Date Written: December 14, 2013
We document two new facts about the market-level response to minimum wage hikes: firm exit and entry both rise. These results pose a puzzle: canonical models of firm dynamics predict that exit rises but that entry falls. We develop a model of firm dynamics based on putty-clay technology and show that it is consistent with the increase in both exit and entry. The putty-clay model is also consistent with the small short-run employment effects of minimum wage hikes commonly found in empirical work. However, unlike monopsony-based explanations for small short-run employment effects, the model implies that the efficiency consequences of minimum wages are potentially large.
Keywords: Firm exit, firm entry, putty-clay, minimum wage
JEL Classification: J23, J30, L10
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation