International productivity and factor price comparisons
Using OECD input–output tables for a diverse group of 33 countries in the year 2000 and estimates of each country's factor stocks, I compute factor payments for aggregate labor and capital with value-added data adjusted for self-employment by sector. Using a detailed technology matrix for the U.S., I compute factor-specific productivity measures in each country relative to the U.S., and show that these measures are strongly correlated with the pattern of wages and rental rates. I find that many low income countries with low labor productivity have relatively high capital productivity. I also find a distinctive pattern between factor productivity and factor payments depending on whether a country has a high or low wage-rental ratio compared to the U.S. I show these findings are consistent with the existence of sector-based differences in production technology and complementarities between factors.
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