Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Two Italian Puzzles: Are Productivity Growth and Competitiveness Really so Depressed?


Author Info

  • Lorenzo Codogno
Registered author(s):


    This paper focuses on two apparent puzzles for the Italian economy: i) How can an extremely poor performance in productivity growth be compatible with strong employment growth?; and ii) How can a sharp decline in competitiveness come along with higher export prices and a general situation for exporters that looks far from desperate? Some possible explanations to these puzzles are presented in this paper. Special factors such as regularisation of immigrant workers and the entry of low-skilled workers into the labour market may have contributed to depressing measured productivity and overstating the loss in competitiveness. Against the backdrop of Italy?s structural problems, this paper asks whether the Italian economy can adjust and grow. Medium-term prospects for the Italian economy remain challenging: for instance, growth in total factor productivity is still disappointingly low and competitiveness keeps deteriorating. However, there have been encouraging signs of improvement, notably the labour market has performed well over the past few years and in response to pressures from fierce foreign competition some adjustment appears to have taken place in the exposed sectors.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Department of the Treasury, Ministry of the Economy and of Finance in its series Working Papers with number wp2009-2.

    as in new window
    Length: 34
    Date of creation:
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:itt:wpaper:wp2009-2

    Contact details of provider:
    Web page:
    More information through EDIRC

    Related research

    Keywords: Productivity; Unit Labour Costs; Competitiveness;

    Find related papers by JEL classification:


    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as in new window

    Cited by:
    1. Annicchiarico, Barbara & Di Dio, Fabio & Felici, Francesco, 2013. "Structural reforms and the potential effects on the Italian economy," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 88-109.
    2. Lorenzo Codogno & Francesco Felici, . "Assessing Italy's Reform Challenges:What Do Growth Accounting and Structural Indicators Say?," Working Papers 8, Department of the Treasury, Ministry of the Economy and of Finance.
    3. Birolo, Adriano, 2009. "Dalla crisi allo sviluppo: quali strategie per le PMI?
      [From the crisis to the growth. Policies to sustain the SM firms]
      ," MPRA Paper 31082, University Library of Munich, Germany.


    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.


    Access and download statistics


    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:itt:wpaper:wp2009-2. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Marina Sabatini).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.