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Foreign Investment and Wages: A Crowding-Out Effect in Mexico


  • Enrique L. Kato-Vidal


The purpose of this article is to determine the impact of foreign direct investment (FDI) on a country’s overall economy rather than simply the sectors receiving such investment. The strategy consisted of adopting a crowding-in/crowding-out approach to Mexico’s total capital volume in the 1993-2010 period. The substitutability of foreign and local capital implies a lower-than-expected economic dynamism. Using a dynamic panel analysis, a negative relationship was found between FDI and the general wage. Throughout the analysis, firm size stands out as a key variable in explaining the impact of FDI.

Suggested Citation

  • Enrique L. Kato-Vidal, 2013. "Foreign Investment and Wages: A Crowding-Out Effect in Mexico," Latin American Journal of Economics-formerly Cuadernos de Economía, Instituto de Economía. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile., vol. 50(2), pages 209-231, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:ioe:cuadec:v:50:y:2013:i:2:p:209-231

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. César Calderón & Rodrigo Fuentes, 2006. "Complementarities between Institutions and Openness in Economic Development: Evidence for a Panel of Countries," Latin American Journal of Economics-formerly Cuadernos de Economía, Instituto de Economía. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile., vol. 43(127), pages 49-80.
    2. Commission on Growth and Development, 2008. "The Growth Report : Strategies for Sustained Growth and Inclusive Development," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6507.
    3. Ch. Pissarides., 2011. "The Unemployment Volatility Puzzle: Is Wage Stickiness the Answer?," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 1.
    4. Manuel Agosin & Roberto Machado, 2005. "Foreign Investment in Developing Countries: Does it Crowd in Domestic Investment?," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(2), pages 149-162.
    5. Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 2003. "Economic Growth, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262025531, July.
    6. Aitken, Brian & Harrison, Ann & Lipsey, Robert E., 1996. "Wages and foreign ownership A comparative study of Mexico, Venezuela, and the United States," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-4), pages 345-371, May.
    7. Petri, Peter A., 2012. "The determinants of bilateral FDI: Is Asia different?," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 201-209.
    8. Tadashi Ito, 2010. "NAFTA and Productivity Convergence between Mexico and the US," Latin American Journal of Economics-formerly Cuadernos de Economía, Instituto de Economía. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile., vol. 47(135), pages 15-55.
    9. Robert J. Barro & Rachel McCleary, 2003. "Religion and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 9682, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Gordon H. Hanson, 2003. "What Has Happened to Wages in Mexico since NAFTA?," NBER Working Papers 9563, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Mihir A. Desai & C. Fritz Foley & James R. Hines Jr., 2005. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Domestic Capital Stock," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 33-38, May.
    12. Blinder, Alan S, 1997. "Is There a Core of Practical Macroeconomics That We Should All Believe?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 240-243, May.
    13. Judson, Ruth A. & Owen, Ann L., 1999. "Estimating dynamic panel data models: a guide for macroeconomists," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 9-15, October.
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    More about this item


    FDI; wage; firm size; substitutability of capital;

    JEL classification:

    • F21 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Investment; Long-Term Capital Movements
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models


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