Exploring a new agenda to improve outcomes for American workers
As the United States continues to struggle with the impact of the devastating COVID-19 recession, policymakers have an opportunity to redress the competition problems in our labor markets. Making the right policy choices, however, requires a deep understanding of long-term, multidimensional problems. That will be solved only by looking to the failures and unrealized opportunities in anti-trust and labor law.
For decades, competition in the U.S. labor market has declined, with the result that American workers have experienced slow wage growth and diminishing job quality. While sluggish productivity growth, rising globalization, and declining union representation are traditionally cited as factors for this historic imbalance in economic power, weak competition in the labor market is increasingly being recognized as a factor as well.
This book by noted experts frames the legal and economic consequences of this imbalance and presents a series of urgently needed reforms of both labor and anti-trust laws to improve outcomes for American workers. These include higher wages, safer workplaces, increased ability to report labor violations, greater mobility, more opportunities for workers to build power, and overall better labor protections.
Inequality in the Labor Market will interest anyone who cares about building a progressive economic agenda or who has a marked interest in labor policy. It also will appeal to anyone hoping to influence or anticipate the much-needed progressive agenda for the United States. The book's unusual scope provides prescriptions that, as Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz notes in the introduction, map a path for rebalancing power, not just in our economy but in our democracy.
List of Illustrations
1. Fostering More-Competitive Labor Markets, Joseph E. Stiglitz
2. The Legal Case for Reform, Sharon Block and Benjamin Elga
3. Labor Market Competition: Framing the Issues, Jared Bernstein and Benjamin H. Harris
4. Fighting Monopsony: A Lack of Competition that Harms Workers, Ioana Elena Marinescu
5. Fair Competition in Labor Markets Requires a Policymaker's Thumb on the Workers' Side of the Scale, Josh Bivens and Heidi Shierholz
6. How Antitrust Law Can HelpInstead of HurtWorkers, Sandeep Vaheesan and Matthew Buck
7. Protecting Competition on Behalf of the People: The Role of State Attorneys General in Challenging Noncompetes and Other Restraints on Employee Mobility, Lisa Madigan and Jane Flanagan
8. Are Noncompetes Holding Down Wages? Evan Starr
9. Fostering More-Competitive Labor Markets through Transparent Wages, Benjamin H. Harris
10. Having Their Cake and Eating It Too: Antitrust Laws and the Fissured Workplace, David H. Seligman
11. Forced Arbitration: A Losing Proposition for Workers, Terri Gerstein
12. Federal Evidence-Based Competition Policy, Kate Tromble and Gregory Nantz
13. Addressing Labor Market Competition at the State Level, Jed Herrmann and Gregory Nantz