Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series,
Trade Union Institute for Economic Research

No 201: Do Workers Benefit from Foreign Ownership? Evidence from Swedish manufacturing

Roger Bandick ()
Additional contact information
Roger Bandick: ESI, Postal: Örebro University , and FIEF, Wallingatan 38, SE-111 24 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: The paper examines whether foreign-owned firms pay higher wages than domestically owned firms, controlling for a number of firm characteristics. As in most other similar studies I find that this appears to be the case. In particular, skilled labor seems to profit from working in foreign-owned firms. Furthermore, I distinguish between Swedish multinational enterprises (MNEs) and other domestically owned firms. In accordance with the idea that MNEs are superior to other firms the former pays significantly higher wages than other domestically owned firms. Foreigners acquiring high-wage Swedish MNEs may thus account for the higher wages in foreign-owned firms. Alternatively, the acquired firms might have more favorable wage growth than non-targeted domestically owned firms. Nevertheless, the two explanations are not mutually exclusive I only get support for that foreign firms select high-wage firms (Swedish MNEs as well as non-MNEs) for acquisition.

Keywords: Wage differentials; Multinational enterprises; Foreign ownership

JEL-codes: F23; J31

27 pages, December 17, 2004

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