Bowley’S Law: The Diffusion Of An Empirical Supposition Into Economic Theory
The share of labour income in national product has declined in many advanced economies over the past 30 years or so. However, many economists are still convinced that the wage share remains more or less constant in the long run. This notion of the long-term relative stability of the wage share is considered to be a stylized fact, or even sometimes referred to as a “law of economics”. This paper attempts to show how the alleged stability of the labour share of income became known as one of the “great magnitudes in economics”. It also shows how this “law” made its way into the three major theories of macroeconomic income distribution, i.e. neoclassical, postKeynesian, and Kaleckian distribution theory. Since the data actually reveal strong fluctuations of aggregate income shares over time, the conclusion has to be drawn that the major macroeconomic theories of growth and distribution are built around an invalid –or at least highly questionable– assumption about the real world.
Volume (Year): (2011)
Issue (Month): 61 ()
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.cahiersdecopo.fr/fr/|
|Order Information:|| Postal: 142 rue du faubourg Saint-Martin. 75010 Paris, France.|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpo:journl:y:2011:i:61:p:19-50. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Carlos Andrés Vasco Correa)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.