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Trade, Skills and Adjustment Costs: A Study of Intra-Sectoral Labor Mobility


  • Robert J. R. Elliott
  • Joanne K. Lindley


The relationship between the ability of workers to change job, sector or industry and the short-run adjustment costs associated with a reallocation of labor is the subject of lively debate among academics. This paper examines recent sector and industry level labor market adjustment in the UK using data from the Quarterly Labour Force Survey. We explore the link between the nature of UK trade patterns and labor adjustment within the manufacturing sector and employ a multinomial logit approach to examine the determinants of "within" and "between" industry mobility. By controlling for individual skill specificity we find some evidence of a link between intra-industry trade and intra-industry labor adjustment. Copyright © 2006 The Authors; Journal compilation © 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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  • Robert J. R. Elliott & Joanne K. Lindley, 2006. "Trade, Skills and Adjustment Costs: A Study of Intra-Sectoral Labor Mobility," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(1), pages 20-41, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:rdevec:v:10:y:2006:i:1:p:20-41

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Abdul K. M. Azhar & Robert J. R. Elliott, 2008. "On the Measurement of Changes in Product Quality in Marginal Intra-Industry Trade," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 144(2), pages 225-247, July.
    2. Lechthaler, Wolfgang & Mileva, Mariya, 2013. "Trade liberalization and wage inequality: New insights from a dynamic trade model with heterogeneous firms and comparative advantage," Kiel Working Papers 1886, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    3. Saeed Rasekhi & Saman Ghaderi, 2012. "Marginal intra-industry trade and adjustment costs: the case study of Iran’s manufacturing industries," International Journal of Economics and Business Research, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 4(1/2), pages 35-43.
    4. repec:ilo:ilowps:468791 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Larch Mario & Lechthaler Wolfgang, 2011. "Comparative Advantage and Skill-Specific Unemployment," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 11(1), pages 1-58, April.
    6. repec:ejn:ejefjr:v:5:y:2017:i:2:p:73-83 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Horácio Faustino & Nuno Leitão, 2009. "Intra-industry trade and labor costs: The smooth adjustment hypothesis," Working Papers Department of Economics 2009/17, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
    8. Nuno Carlos Leitão & Bogdan Dima & Dima (Cristea) Stefana, 2013. "Marginal Intra-industry Trade and Adjustment Costs in Labour Market," Working Papers 2013.39, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    9. repec:eee:jeeman:v:83:y:2017:i:c:p:50-67 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Luo, Tianyuan & Escalante, Cesar, 2014. "Determinants of Occupational Changes of U.S. Migrant Farm Workers under Recessionary Times," 2014 Annual Meeting, February 1-4, 2014, Dallas, Texas 162415, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
    11. Abdul Azhar & Robert Elliott, 2011. "A Measure of Trade Induced Adjustment in Volume and Quality Space," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 22(5), pages 955-968, November.
    12. Roger White & Cheng Chen, 2012. "US manufacturing and vertical/horizontal intra-industry trade: examining the smooth adjustment hypothesis," International Journal of Economics and Business Research, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 4(1/2), pages 1-20.
    13. Wolfgang Lechthaler & Mariya Mileva, 2013. "Two-Country Dynamic Model of Trade with Heterogeneous Firms and Comparative Advantage," WWWforEurope Working Papers series 12, WWWforEurope.
    14. Imre Ferto, 2009. "Labour Market Adjustment and Intra-Industry Trade: The Effects of Association on the Hungarian Food Industry," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(3), pages 668-681.
    15. Roy, Jayjit, 2017. "On the environmental consequences of intra-industry trade," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 50-67.
    16. Imre Ferto & Károly Attila Soos, 2008. "Marginal Intra-Industry Trade and Adjustment Costs - A Hungarian-Polish Comparison," IEHAS Discussion Papers 0815, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

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