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Selection into Trade and Wage Inequality

Author

Listed:
  • Thomas Sampson

Abstract

This paper analyzes how intra-industry trade affects the wage distribution when both workers and firms are heterogeneous. Positive assortative matching between worker skill and firm technology generates an employer size-wage premium and an exporter wage premium. Fixed export costs cause the selection of advanced technology, high skill firms into exporting and trade shifts the firm technology distribution upwards. Consequently, trade increases skill demand and wage inequality in all countries, both on aggregate and within the upper tail of the wage distribution. This holds when firms receive random technology draws and when technology depends on firm level R&D.

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Sampson, 2014. "Selection into Trade and Wage Inequality," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 157-202, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejmic:v:6:y:2014:i:3:p:157-202
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/mic.6.3.157
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. David H. Autor & David Dorn & Gordon H. Hanson, 2016. "The China Shock: Learning from Labor-Market Adjustment to Large Changes in Trade," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 8(1), pages 205-240, October.
    2. repec:bla:presci:v:97:y:2018:i:1:p:9-24 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Borrs, Linda & Knauth, Florian, 2016. "The impact of trade and technology on wage components," DICE Discussion Papers 241, University of Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
    4. Alessandra Bonfiglioli & Rosario Crinò & Gino Gancia, 2018. "Betting on Exports: Trade and Endogenous Heterogeneity," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 128(609), pages 612-651, March.
    5. Bombardini, Matilde & Orefice, Gianluca & Tito, Maria D., 2019. "Does exporting improve matching? Evidence from French employer-employee data," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 229-241.
    6. Swati Dhingra & Gianmarco Ottaviano & Veronica Rappoport & Thomas Sampson & Catherine Thomas, 2018. "UK trade and FDI: A post‐Brexit perspective," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 97(1), pages 9-24, March.
    7. Thibault Fally & Benjamin Faber, 2016. "Firm Heterogeneity in Consumption Baskets: Evidence from Home and Store Scanner Data," 2016 Meeting Papers 381, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    8. Davidson, Carl & Heyman, Fredrik & Matusz, Steven & Sjöholm, Fredrik & Zhu, Susan Chun, 2018. "Globalization and the Jobs Ladder," Working Papers 2018:31, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    9. repec:eee:reveco:v:56:y:2018:i:c:p:3-14 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Antràs, Pol & de Gortari, Alonso & Itskhoki, Oleg, 2017. "Globalization, inequality and welfare," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 387-412.
    11. Elhanan Helpman, 2016. "Globalization and Wage Inequality," NBER Working Papers 22944, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Michael Koch, 2016. "Skills, Tasks and the Scarcity of Talent in a Global Economy," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(3), pages 536-563, August.
    13. Alessandra Bonfiglioli & Rosario Crinò & Gino Gancia, 2018. "Firms and Economic Performance: A View from Trade," Working Papers 1047, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    14. Maximilian von Ehrlich, Tobias Seidel, 2016. "Financial Development and Inequality in the Global Economy," Diskussionsschriften credresearchpaper08, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft - CRED.
    15. Dauth, Wolfgang & Findeisen, Sebastian & Suedekum, Jens, 2016. "Adjusting to globalization - Evidence from worker-establishment matches in Germany," DICE Discussion Papers 205, University of Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
    16. Muendler, Marc-Andreas, 2017. "Trade, technology, and prosperity: An account of evidence from a labor-market perspective," WTO Staff Working Papers ERSD-2017-15, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division.
    17. Mamoon, Dawood, 2017. "Why International Trade Cause Inequality in Developing Countries," MPRA Paper 82268, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Goel, Manisha, 2017. "Inequality Between and Within Skill Groups: The Curious Case of India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 153-176.
    19. Görg, Holger & Hanley, Aoife, 2017. "Globalization: Implications for firms in Germany," Working Papers 04/2017, German Council of Economic Experts / Sachverständigenrat zur Begutachtung der gesamtwirtschaftlichen Entwicklung.
    20. Sampson, Thomas, 2016. "Assignment reversals: Trade, skill allocation and wage inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 163(C), pages 365-409.
    21. repec:bla:reviec:v:26:y:2018:i:4:p:801-825 is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Hiroshi Daisaka & Taiji Furusawa & Noriyuki Yanagawa, 2014. "Globalization, Financial Development and Income Inequality," Pacific Economic Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(5), pages 612-633, December.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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