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Distributive patterns in settler economies: agrarian income inequality during the first globalization (1870-1913)

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  • Henry Willebald

    ()
    (Universidad de la República (Uruguay). Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y de Administración. Instituto de Economía)

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to identify different distributive patterns in the settler economies (Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, New Zealand and Uruguay) during the First Globalization (1870-1913). I present the methodological decisions, discuss my results and propose some conjectures about the long-run evolution of inequality. As agriculture was the most important productive activity in the settler economies and one of the main sectors in leading the land frontier expansion, a study of the generation of income and the evolution of the distribution in this sector is of main interest. First, I estimate the income (or product) per worker in the agriculture and concern for relative performance within the club focusing on (total and sectoral) growth and convergence. After that, I present the notion of functional income distribution and discuss the existence of two distributive patterns. In one of these, the territories that were British colonies and where the capitalist relationships predominated, and in the other, in former colonies of Spain, economic relationships were based on agrarian rental incomes. During the period, income distribution worsened in the Australasian economies and Canada, but it worsened even more in the South American Southern Cone countries. These differences among settler economies are consistent with dissimilar dynamics of expansion onto new land and the conformation of institutional arrangements that promoted unlike patterns of distribution.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Instituto de Economia - IECON in its series Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) with number 13-05.

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Length: 64 pages
Date of creation: May 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ulr:wpaper:dt-05-13

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Keywords: agriculture; functional income distribution; settler economies;

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  1. Ronald Findlay, 1995. "Factor Proportions, Trade, and Growth," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262061759, December.
  2. Kurz,Heinz D. & Salvadori,Neri, 1995. "Theory of Production," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521443258, October.
  3. J.C.Herbert Emery & Kris Inwood & Henry Thille, 2007. "Hecksher-Ohlin In Canada: New Estimates Of Regional Wages And Land Prices," Australian Economic History Review, Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand, vol. 47(1), pages 22-48, 03.
  4. Amit Bhaduri, 2008. "On the dynamics of profit-led and wage-led growth," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 32(1), pages 147-160, January.
  5. Thorvaldur Gylfason, 2007. "The International Economics of Natural Resources and Growth," CESifo Working Paper Series 1994, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. MartinP. Shanahan & JohnK. Wilson, 2007. "Measuring Inequality Trends In Colonial Australia Using Factor-Price Ratios: The Importance Of Boundaries," Australian Economic History Review, Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand, vol. 47(1), pages 6-21, 03.
  7. Luis Bertola & Cecilia Castelnovo & Javier Rodriguez & Henry Willebald, 2008. "Income distribution in the Latin American Southern Cone during the first globalization boom, ca: 1870-1920," Working Papers in Economic History wp08-05, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Historia Económica e Instituciones.
  8. Wong, Wei-Kang, 2006. "OECD convergence: A sectoral decomposition exercise," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 93(2), pages 210-214, November.
  9. Bértola, Luis & Castelnovo, Cecilia & Rodríguez, Javier & Willebald, Henry, 2010. "Between the colonial heritage and the first globalization boom: on income inequality in the Southern Cone," Revista de Historia Económica, Cambridge University Press, vol. 28(02), pages 307-341, September.
  10. Field, Alexander J., 2006. "Technological Change and U.S. Productivity Growth in the Interwar Years," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 66(01), pages 203-236, March.
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