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We examine the determinants of establishment performance in the UK, using cross-sectional data from the 1998 Workplace Employee Relations Survey to replicate research by Fernie and Metcalf (1995) who used data from the 1990 Workplace Employee Relations Survey; specifically, we test whether employee representation, contingent pay and efforts to boost employee participation affect a set of economic and industrial relations outcome indicators in the manner they suggest. We also re-estimate the influential WERS90-based study of Machin and Stewart (1996) on the links between union status and financial performance. In both cases we report very different results.