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Distributive shares in the US economy, 1964--2001


  • Simon Mohun


Specifying the labour theory of value in a way that distinguishes both productive from unproductive labour, and production workers from supervisory workers, this paper considers distributive shares in the US economy between 1964 and 2001. Trends in productive and unproductive labour are explored in full-time equivalents, hours and money. After 1979, there was a large shift of money value (not matched by a shift in either hours or employment) from the wages paid to productive labour to those paid to supervisory labour. Since the wage share in money value added of non-supervisory labour in unproductive sectors was approximately constant, the 1980s and 1990s also saw the profits share squeezed by the rising wage share of supervisory workers. Some implications of this are explored in the construction of a class rather than a factor approach to distributive shares. Copyright 2006, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Simon Mohun, 2006. "Distributive shares in the US economy, 1964--2001," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 30(3), pages 347-370, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cambje:v:30:y:2006:i:3:p:347-370

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Setterfield, Mark & Kim, Yun K., 2016. "Debt servicing, aggregate consumption, and growth," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 22-33.
    2. Soon Ryoo, 2016. "Inequality of Income and Wealth in the Long Run: A Kaldorian Perspective," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(2), pages 429-457, May.
    3. Mark Setterfield & Yun K. Kim & Jeremy Rees, 2016. "Inequality, Debt Servicing and the Sustainability of Steady State Growth," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(1), pages 45-63, January.
    4. Soon Ryoo, 2016. "Top Income Shares and Aggregate Wealth-Income Ratio in a Two-Class Corporate Economy," UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers 2016-17, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics.
    5. James Heintz, 2013. "Unpacking the US labor share," Chapters,in: Capitalism on Trial, chapter 21 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    6. Eckhard Hein & Till van Treeck, 2010. "‘Financialisation’ in Post-Keynesian Models of Distribution and Growth: A Systematic Review," Chapters,in: Handbook of Alternative Theories of Economic Growth, chapter 13 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    7. Eckhard Hein, 2015. "Finance-dominated capitalism and re-distribution of income: a Kaleckian perspective," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 39(3), pages 907-934.
    8. Tavani, Daniele & Vasudevan, Ramaa, 2014. "Capitalists, workers, and managers: Wage inequality and effective demand," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 120-131.
    9. Hein, Eckhard, 2011. "Distribution, ‘Financialisation’ and the Financial and Economic Crisis – Implications for Post-crisis Economic Policies," MPRA Paper 31180, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Jonathan F. Cogliano, 2017. "Surplus Value Production and Realization in Marxian Theory - Applications to the U.S., 1987-2015," Working Paper Series 2017-01, Dickinson College, Department of Economics.
    11. Trofimov, Ivan D., 2017. "Profit rates in the developed capitalist economies: a time series investigation," MPRA Paper 79529, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Yun K. Kim & Mark Setterfield & Yuan Mei, 2014. "A theory of aggregate consumption," European Journal of Economics and Economic Policies: Intervention, Edward Elgar Publishing, vol. 11(1), pages 31-49, April.
    13. Vaona, Andrea, 2015. "Price–price deviations are highly persistent," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 86-95.
    14. Eckhard Hein, 2012. "The Macroeconomics of Finance-Dominated Capitalism – and its Crisis," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 14931.
    15. Yun K. Kim & Mark Setterfield & Yuan Mei, 2015. "Aggregate consumption and debt accumulation: an empirical examination of US household behaviour," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 39(1), pages 93-112.
    16. Papageorgiou, Theofanis & Michaelides, Panayotis G. & Milios, John, 2009. "Economic Fluctuations, Cyclical Regularities and Technological Change: The U.S. Food Sector (1958–2006)," MPRA Paper 67115, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    17. Mohun, Simon & Veneziani, Roberto, 2006. "Goodwin cycles and the U.S. economy, 1948-2004," MPRA Paper 30444, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Jeong, Sangjun, 2012. "Right conclusion with weak evidence: A review of," MPRA Paper 42619, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    19. Mark Setterfield, 2014. "Rising Income Inequality, Increased Household Indebtedness, and Post Keynesian Macrodynamics," Working Papers 1403, New School for Social Research, Department of Economics.
    20. repec:psl:pslqrr:2017:21 is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Mark Setterfield, 2012. "Real Sector Imbalances and the Great Recession," Working Papers 1201, Trinity College, Department of Economics.
    22. Thomas I. Palley, 2012. "A neo-Kaleckian - Goodwin model of capitalist economic growth: Monopoly power,managerial pay, labor market conflict, and endogenous technical progress," IMK Working Paper 105-2012, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.
    23. Hein, Eckhard. & Mundt, Matthias., 2012. "Financialisation and the requirements and potentials for wage-led recovery : a review focussing on the G20," ILO Working Papers 994709323402676, International Labour Organization.

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