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Unwrapping some euro area growth puzzles: Factor substitution, productivity and unemployment

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  • Klump, Rainer
  • McAdam, Peter
  • Willman, Alpo

Abstract

In this paper, we estimate a long run supply-side system incorporating a CES production function with time-varying factor-augmenting technical progress for the euro area over the period 1970-2005. We find that the elasticity of substitution lies below unity at 0.7, that labor-augmenting technical progress is dominant in the long run while capital-augmenting technical progress plays an important role in the interim period. Importantly, we also find evidence of a structural break in the pattern of biased technical progress towards the end of the 1990s. Our results help to solve two puzzles in Europe's recent growth experience which differ markedly from the US experience. The first is related to the effects of the IT boom in the 1990s on productivity growth in Europe. The second puzzle concerns the changes in the "Okun's law" relationship, linking growth to the reduction of unemployment, which are observable in Europe since the late 1990s.

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  • Klump, Rainer & McAdam, Peter & Willman, Alpo, 2008. "Unwrapping some euro area growth puzzles: Factor substitution, productivity and unemployment," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 645-666, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jmacro:v:30:y:2008:i:2:p:645-666
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    Cited by:

    1. Ioannis Bournakis & Dimitris Christopoulos & Sushanta Mallick, 2015. "Knowledge Spillovers, absorptive capacity and growth: An Industry-level Analysis for OECD Countries," Working Papers 57, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Business and Management, Centre for Globalisation Research.
    2. Eric Miller, 2008. "An Assessment of CES and Cobb-Douglas Production Functions: Working Paper 2008-05," Working Papers 19992, Congressional Budget Office.
    3. Ivan Mendieta-Muñoz, 2017. "Is Potential Output Growth Falling?," Working Paper Series, Department of Economics, University of Utah 2017_03, University of Utah, Department of Economics.
    4. Chirinko, Robert S., 2008. "[sigma]: The long and short of it," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, pages 671-686.
    5. Jochen Hartwig, 2014. "Testing Okun’s law with Swiss industry data," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(29), pages 3581-3590, October.
    6. Andreas Irmen & Rainer Klump, 2009. "Factor Substitution, Income Distribution and Growth in a Generalized Neoclassical Model," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 10, pages 464-479, November.
    7. Chen, Xi, 2017. "Biased Technical Change, Scale, And Factor Substitution In U.S. Manufacturing Industries," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 21(02), pages 488-514, March.
    8. Young, Andrew T., 2013. "U.S. Elasticities Of Substitution And Factor Augmentation At The Industry Level," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 17(04), pages 861-897, June.
    9. Rainer Klump & Peter McAdam & Alpo Willman, 2012. "The Normalized Ces Production Function: Theory And Empirics," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(5), pages 769-799, December.
    10. Mendieta-Muñoz, Ivan, 2015. "Is potential output growth falling?," MPRA Paper 68278, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Xue, Jianpo & Yip, Chong K., 2013. "Aggregate elasticity of substitution and economic growth: A synthesis," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, pages 60-75.
    12. Federici, Daniela & Saltari, Enrico & Wymer, Clifford, 2015. "Endogenizing the ICT sector: A multi-sector approach," MPRA Paper 66723, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Luciano BOGGIO & Vincenzo DALL’AGLIO & Marco MAGNANI, 2010. "On Labour Shares in Recent Decades: A Survey," Rivista Internazionale di Scienze Sociali, Vita e Pensiero, Pubblicazioni dell'Universita' Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, vol. 118(3), pages 283-333.
    14. Saam, Marianne, 2014. "The identification of directed technical change revisited," ZEW Discussion Papers 14-127, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    15. Saltari, Enrico & Federici, Daniela, 2013. "Elasticity of substitution and technical progress: Is there a misspecification problem?," MPRA Paper 52194, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Kenneth G. Stewart & Jiang Li, 2014. "Factor substitution, factor-augmenting technical progress, and trending factor shares: the Canadian evidence," Econometrics Working Papers 1403, Department of Economics, University of Victoria.

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