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Title:Do legal standards affect ethical concerns of consumers? PDF Logo
Authors:Engelmann, Dirk
Kübler, Dorothea
Issue Date:2007
Series/Report no.:IZA Discussion Papers 3266
Abstract:In order to address the impact of regulation on ethical concerns of consumers, we study the effect of a minimum wage. In our experimental market, consumers have monopsony power, firms engage in Bertrand competition, and workers are passive recipients of a wage payment. Two treatments are employed, one with no minimum wage in the first part but with a minimum wage in the second part, and one treatment with a minimum wage at the outset that is abolished in the second part. In both treatments, wages decrease over time in the first part even though some consumers show an interest in fair wages. If a minimum wage is in place, wages decline even faster. Introducing a minimum wage in a mature market raises average wages, while abolishing it lowers them. We discuss the implications of our results, such as the crowding out of ethical behavior through legal regulation.
Subjects:Fairness
crowding out
consumer behavior
minimum wage
experimental economics
JEL:C91
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA)

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