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Distribution dynamics of regional GDP per employee in unified Germany

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  • Sebastian Vollmer

    ()

  • Hajo Holzmann
  • Florian Ketterer
  • Stephan Klasen

Abstract

We investigate to what extent convergence in production levels per worker has been achieved in Germany since unification. To this end, we model the distribution of GDP per employee across German districts using two-component normal mixtures. While in the first year after unification, the two-component distributions were clearly separated and bimodal, corresponding to the East and West German districts, respectively, in the following years they started to merge showing only one mode. Still, using the recently developed EM-test for homogeneity in normal mixtures, the hypothesis of just a single normal component for the whole distribution is clearly rejected for all years. A Posterior analysis shows that about a third of the East German districts were assigned to the richer component in 2006, thus catching up to levels of the West. The growth rate of a mover district is about 1% point higher than the growth rate of a non-mover district which had the same initial level of GDP per employee. Copyright The Author(s) 2013

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Empirical Economics.

Volume (Year): 44 (2013)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 491-509

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Handle: RePEc:spr:empeco:v:44:y:2013:i:2:p:491-509

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Related research

Keywords: Regional convergence; Distribution dynamics; Mixture models; Germany; Unification; O47; R11;

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  1. Burda, Michael C., 2008. "What kind of shock was it? Regional integration and structural change in Germany after unification," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 557-567, December.
  2. Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1991. "Convergence across States and Regions," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 22(1), pages 107-182.
  3. Uhlig, Harald, 2008. "The slow decline of East Germany," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 517-541, December.
  4. Roberta Colavecchio & Declan Curran & Michael Funke, 2005. "Drifting Together or Falling Apart? The Empirics of Regional Economic Growth in Post-Unification Germany," CESifo Working Paper Series 1533, CESifo Group Munich.
  5. Hajo Holzmann & Sebastian Vollmer, 2008. "A likelihood ratio test for bimodality in two-component mixtures with application to regional income distribution in the EU," AStA Advances in Statistical Analysis, Springer, vol. 92(1), pages 57-69, February.
  6. Paapaa, Richard & van Dijk, Herman K., 1998. "Distribution and mobility of wealth of nations," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(7), pages 1269-1293, July.
  7. Harald Uhlig, 2006. "Regional Labor Markets, Network Externalities and Migration: The Case of German Reunification," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 383-387, May.
  8. George A. Akerlof & Andrew K. Rose & Janet L. Yellen & Helga Hessenius, 1991. "East Germany in from the Cold: The Economic Aftermath of Currency Union," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 22(1), pages 1-106.
  9. Quah, Danny, 1993. " Galton's Fallacy and Tests of the Convergence Hypothesis," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 95(4), pages 427-43, December.
  10. Bianchi, Marco, 1997. "Testing for Convergence: Evidence from Non-parametric Multimodality Tests," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(4), pages 393-409, July-Aug..
  11. Vollmer, Sebastian & Holzmann, Hajo & Schwaiger, Florian, 2010. "Peaks vs. Components," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-452, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
  12. Krugman, Paul, 1991. "History versus Expectations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(2), pages 651-67, May.
  13. Barro, Robert J & Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1992. "Convergence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(2), pages 223-51, April.
  14. Quah, Danny T., 1996. "Empirics for economic growth and convergence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 1353-1375, June.
  15. Andreas Schäfer & Thomas Steger, 2010. "History, Expectations, and Public Policy: Economic Development in Eastern Germany," CESifo Working Paper Series 3184, CESifo Group Munich.
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Cited by:
  1. Volker Grossmann & Thomas Steger, 2013. "Konvergieren die Einkommen zwischen Ost- und Westdeutschland? Das deutsch-deutsche Experiment aus wachstumsökonomischer Sicht," ifo Dresden berichtet, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 20(02), pages 29-32, 04.
  2. Steger, Thomas & Schäfer, Andreas, 2012. "Journey into the Unknown? Economic Consequences of Factor Market Integration under Increasing Returns to Scale," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62062, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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