The Embodiment of Intangible Investment Goods: a Q-Theory Approach
AbstractRecent empirical findings on firms’ expenditure towards the creation and acquisition of knowledge goods, otherwise known as intangibles, suggest that their share in overall investment has grown considerably. Still, intangible investment is rarely present in investment models. In this paper, I extend the q-theory of investment to model explicitly the decision of firms to invest in intangibles. I then use the model to measure the contribution of intangible goods to the overall capital stock in the U.S. The model highlights the embodiment of intangible goods in tangibles and the role of relative price movements in the measurement of the contribution of each type of investment to the overall capital stock. In particular, given that the relative cost of the main input to intangible production, skilled labor, rose substantially in the 80s and 90s, the price of intangibles inherits this rise. As a result, the downward trend in the aggregate investment deflator series reported by national accounts, which accounts only for the presence of tangible investment goods, is found to have a significant downward bias in the 90s. The model also shows that the growth in the overall capital stock from the late-80s until 2000 was driven mainly by an increase in the contribution of intangibles. However, the contribution of intangibles fell consistently after 2000. These results underscore the importance of accounting for the movements in the price of intangibles rather than focusing only on their rising share in overall investment.
Download InfoIf 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.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Queen's University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1217.
Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2008
Date of revision:
Intangible investment; Q-Theory; Skill Premium; Investment Deflator;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Capital; Investment; Capacity
- E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
- O47 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Measurement of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
- G31 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Capital Budgeting; Fixed Investment and Inventory Studies
- J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
- J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Nazim Belhocine, 2009. "Treating Intangible Inputs As Investment Goods," IMF Working Papers 09/240, International Monetary Fund.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Babcock).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.