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Reallocation and Technology: Evidence from the U.S. Steel Industry

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  • Collard-Wexler, Allan
  • De Loecker, Jan

Abstract

We measure the impact of a drastic new technology for producing steel, the minimill, on the aggregate productivity of U.S. steel producers, using unique plant-level data between 1963 and 2002. We find that the sharp increase in the industry's productivity is linked to this new technology, and operates through two distinct mechanisms. First, minimills displaced the older technology, called vertically integrated production, and this reallocation of output was responsible for a third of the increase in the industry's productivity. Second, increased competition, due to the expansion of minimills, drove a substantial reallocation process within the group of vertically integrated producers, driving a resurgence in their productivity, and consequently of the industry's productivity as a whole.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 9331.

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Date of creation: Feb 2013
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:9331

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Keywords: competition; productivity; reallocation; technology;

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Cited by:
  1. Jan De Loecker & Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg, 2013. "Firm Performance in a Global Market," NBER Working Papers 19308, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Amitabh Chandra & Amy Finkelstein & Adam Sacarny & Chad Syverson, 2013. "Healthcare Exceptionalism? Productivity and Allocation in the U.S. Healthcare Sector," NBER Working Papers 19200, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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