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Wages, Rents and Heterogeneous Moving Costs

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  • Krupka, Douglas J.

    (University of Michigan)

  • Donaldson, Kwame

    ()
    (Georgia State University)

Abstract

The model of compensating differentials in regional labor markets was developed by Roback (1982). The model interprets regional differences in constant quality wages and rents as compensating firms and residents for inter-regional differences in amenities. The model assumes that the costs of relocating to a new city are zero. The results hold in the presence of moving costs for the marginal migrant. This paper extends the Roback model to allow for moving costs which vary among a city’s residents and businesses. This modification of the model generates new interpretations of regional differences in rents and (to a lesser extent) wages. The importance of amenities is retained, but housing supply becomes the main other determinant of regional rents. Housing supply was for the most part ignored in the literature following on Roback’s initial insight. The new perspective also provides a bridge between the neo-classical perspective implicit in Roback’s approach and the newer literature on agglomeration economies.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3224.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3224

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Related research

Keywords: housing supply; quality of life; compensating differentials; amenities; capitalization;

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References

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  1. Christopher R. Berry & Edward L. Glaeser, 2005. "The Divergence of Human Capital Levels across Cities," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2091, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  2. Tabuchi, Takatoshi & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 2002. "Taste heterogeneity, labor mobility and economic geography," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 155-177, October.
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  6. Edward Glaeser, 1997. "Learning in Cities," NBER Working Papers 6271, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Roback, Jennifer, 1982. "Wages, Rents, and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1257-78, December.
  8. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko, 2001. "Urban Decline and Durable Housing," NBER Working Papers 8598, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Kahn Matthew E., 1995. "A Revealed Preference Approach to Ranking City Quality of Life," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 221-235, September.
  10. Cragg, Michael & Kahn, Matthew, 1997. "New Estimates of Climate Demand: Evidence from Location Choice," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 261-284, September.
  11. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko & Raven E. Saks, 2005. "Urban Growth and Housing Supply," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2062, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
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  13. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko & Raven Saks, 2003. "Why is Manhattan So Expensive? Regulation and the Rise in House Prices," NBER Working Papers 10124, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Blomquist, Glenn C & Berger, Mark C & Hoehn, John P, 1988. "New Estimates of Quality of Life in Urban Areas," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 89-107, March.
  15. Berry, Christopher R. & Glaeser, Edward L., 2005. "Divergence of Human Capital Levels across Cities," Working Paper Series rwp05-057, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  16. Christopher R. Berry & Edward L. Glaeser, 2005. "The divergence of human capital levels across cities," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 84(3), pages 407-444, 08.
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  20. Helsley, Robert W. & Strange, William C., 1990. "Matching and agglomeration economies in a system of cities," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 189-212, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Mercedes Teruel-Carrizosa & Agustí Segarra-Blasco, 2008. "Immigration and Firm Growth: Evidence from Spanish cities," Working Papers XREAP2008-11, Xarxa de Referència en Economia Aplicada (XREAP), revised Nov 2008.
  2. Krupka, Douglas J., 2008. "On Amenities, Natural Advantage and Agglomeration," IZA Discussion Papers 3598, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Teruel Carrizosa , Mercedes & Segarra Blasco , Agustí, 2009. "Immigration and Firm Performance: a city-level approach," Investigaciones Regionales, Asociación Española de Ciencia Regional, issue 15, pages 111-137.

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