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International trade and American wages in general equilibrium, 1967-1995

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  • James Harrigan

Abstract

In the last quarter century, wage inequality has increased dramatically in the United States. At the same time, the United States has become more integrated into the world economy, relative prices of final goods have changed, the capital stock has more than doubled, and the labor force has become steadily more educated. This paper estimates a flexible, empirical, general equilibrium model of wage determination in an attempt to sort out the connections between these trends. Aggregate data on prices and quantities of imports, outputs, and factor supplies are constructed from disaggregate sources. The econometric analysis concludes that wage inequality has been partly driven by changes in relative factor supplies and relative final goods prices. In contrast, imports have played a negligible direct role.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of New York in its series Staff Reports with number 46.

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Date of creation: 1998
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:46

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Keywords: Wages ; International trade ; Imports ; Income distribution;

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References

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  1. Edward E. Leamer, 1996. "In Search of Stolper-Samuelson Effects on U.S. Wages," NBER Working Papers 5427, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Robert E. Baldwin & Glen G. Cain, 1997. "Shifts in U.S. Relative Wages: The Role of Trade, Technology and Factor Endowments," NBER Working Papers 5934, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Harrigan, James, 1997. "Technology, Factor Supplies, and International Specialization: Estimating the Neoclassical Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(4), pages 475-94, September.
  4. Matthew J. Slaughter, 1998. "What Are the Results of Product-Price Studies and What Can We Learn From Their Differences?," NBER Working Papers 6591, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Park, Jin Heum, 1996. "Measuring education over time: A comparison of old and new measures of eduction from the Current Population Survey," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 425-428, March.
  6. Jones, Ronald W & Scheinkman, Jose A, 1977. "The Relevance of the Two-Sector Production Model in Trade Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(5), pages 909-35, October.
  7. Wolak, Frank A., 1989. "Testing inequality constraints in linear econometric models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 205-235, June.
  8. Berndt, Ernst R & Savin, N Eugene, 1975. "Estimation and Hypothesis Testing in Singular Equation Systems with Autoregressive Disturbances," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 43(5-6), pages 937-57, Sept.-Nov.
  9. Davidson, Russell & MacKinnon, James G., 1993. "Estimation and Inference in Econometrics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195060119, October.
  10. Krugman, Paul R., 2000. "Technology, trade and factor prices," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 51-71, February.
  11. Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1992. "The Structure of Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(1), pages 285-326, February.
  12. Leamer, E.E., 1995. "The Heckscher-Ohlin Model in Theory and Practice," Princeton Studies in International Economics 77, International Economics Section, Departement of Economics Princeton University,.
  13. Donald J. Rousslang & Theodore To, 1993. "Domestic Trade and Transportation Costs as Barriers to International Trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 26(1), pages 208-21, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Avraham Ebenstein & Ann Harrison & Margaret McMillan & Shannon Phillips, 2009. "Estimating the Impact of Trade and Offshoring on American Workers Using the Current Population Surveys," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0742, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
  2. Dao-Zhi Zeng & Laixun Zhao, 2007. "Globalization, Interregional and International Inequalities," Discussion Paper Series 209, Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration, Kobe University.
  3. Peter H. Lindert & Jeffrey G. Williamson, 2003. "Does Globalization Make the World More Unequal?," NBER Chapters, in: Globalization in Historical Perspective, pages 227-276 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Strauss-Kahn, Vanessa, 2003. "Globalization and wage premia: reconciling facts and theory," MPRA Paper 20410, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Avraham Ebenstein & Ann Harrison & Margaret McMillan & Shannon Phillips, 2009. "Why are American Workers getting Poorer? Estimating the Impact of Trade and Offshoring Using the CPS," NBER Working Papers 15107, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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