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Flexibility, Investment, and Growth

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  • Giuseppe Bertola

Abstract

This paper proposes a model of diversifiable uncertainty, irreversible investment decisions, and endogenous growth. The detailed microeconomic structure of the model makes it possible to study the general equilibrium effects of obstacles to labor mobility. Labor mobility costs reduce private returns to investment, imply a slower rate of endogenous growth, and unambiguously lower a representative agent's welfare. If external effects are disregarded, restricted labor mobility may be consistent with higher wage levels in full employment equilibrium: this may help explain why labor's political representatives often tend to decrease labor mobility in reality, rather than to enhance it. The lower growth rate of "disembodied" productivity, however, implies slower wage growth in equilibrium, with negative welfare effects even for agents who own only labor.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3864.

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Date of creation: Oct 1991
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Publication status: published as Journal of Monetary Economics, vol 34, 1994, pp 215-238
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3864

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