IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Factor Market Distortions Across Time, Space, and Sectors in China

  • Loren Brandt

    (University of Toronto)

  • Trevor Tombe

    (University of Toronto)

  • Xiadong Zhu

    (University of Toronto)

In this paper, we measure TFP losses in China's non-agricultural economy associated with labour and capital misallocation across provinces and sectors between 1985-2007. We also decompose the overall loss into factor market distortions within provinces (between state and non-state sectors) and distortions between provinces (within sectors). Over the entire period, misallocation lowers aggregate non-agricultural TFP by an average of twenty percent. However, after initially declining, these losses increased appreciably beginning in the mid-1990s. This reversal can be attributed almost exclusively to increasing misallocation of capital between state and non-state sectors within provinces, while losses from between province misallocation remained fairly constant. We argue that the recent increase in capital market distortions is related to government policies that encourage investments in the state sector at the expense of investments in the more productive non-state sector. (Copyright: Elsevier)

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: Access to full texts is restricted to ScienceDirect subscribers and institutional members. See for details.

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics in its journal Review of Economic Dynamics.

Volume (Year): 16 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 39-58

in new window

Handle: RePEc:red:issued:11-95
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Marina Azzimonti, Department of Economics, Stonybrook University, 10 Nicolls Road, Stonybrook NY 11790 USA

Web page:

More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Web: Email:

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Restuccia, Diego & Yang, Dennis Tao & Zhu, Xiaodong, 2008. "Agriculture and aggregate productivity: A quantitative cross-country analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 234-250, March.
  2. David Dollar & Shang-Jin Wei, 2007. "Das (Wasted) Kapital; Firm Ownership and Investment Efficiency in China," IMF Working Papers 07/9, International Monetary Fund.
  3. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2007. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," NBER Working Papers 13290, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Fariha Kamal & Mary E. Lovely, 2013. "Labor Allocation in China: Implicit Taxation of the Heterogeneous Non-State Sector," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 59(4), pages 731-758, December.
  5. Eric J. Bartelsman & John C. Haltiwanger & Stefano Scarpetta, 2009. "Cross-Country Differences in Productivity: The Role of Allocation and Selection," NBER Working Papers 15490, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Loren Brandt & Xiaodong Zhu, 2010. "Accounting for China's Growth," Working Papers tecipa-394, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  7. Loren Brandt & Carsten Holz, 2005. "Spatial Price Differences in China: Estimates and Implications," Microeconomics 0512001, EconWPA.
  8. Poncet, Sandra, 2003. "Measuring Chinese domestic and international integration," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 1-21.
  9. Kim J. Ruhl, 2008. "The International Elasticity Puzzle," Working Papers 08-30, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
  10. Boyreau-Debray, Genevieve & Wei, Shang-Jin, 2004. "Pitfalls of a State-Dominated Financial System: The Case of China," CEPR Discussion Papers 4471, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Alwyn Young, 2000. "The Razor's Edge: Distortions and Incremental Reform in the People's Republic of China," NBER Working Papers 7828, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Tasso Adamopoulos, 2010. "The Size Distribution of Farms and International Productivity Differences," 2010 Meeting Papers 1145, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Gasper A. Garofalo & Steven Yamarik, 2002. "Regional Convergence: Evidence From A New State-By-State Capital Stock Series," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(2), pages 316-323, May.
  14. Gollin, Douglas & Parente, Stephen L. & Rogerson, Richard, 2000. "Farm Work, Home Work And International Productivity Differences," 2000 Annual meeting, July 30-August 2, Tampa, FL 21797, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  15. Alwyn Young, 2000. "The Razor's Edge: Distortions and Incremental Reform in the People's Republic of China," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(4), pages 1091-1135.
  16. Gong Liutang & Xie Danyang, 2006. "Factor Mobility and Dispersion in Marginal Products: A Case on China," Frontiers of Economics in China, Higher Education Press, vol. 1(1), pages 1-13, March.
  17. Zhang, Xiaobo & Tan, Kong-Yam, 2007. "Incremental Reform and Distortions in China’s Product and Factor Markets," MPRA Paper 6804, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  18. Guner, Nezih & Ventura, Gustavo & Xu, Yi (Daniel), 2007. "Macroeconomic Implications of Size-Dependent Policies," CEPR Discussion Papers 6138, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Vollrath, Dietrich, 2009. "How important are dual economy effects for aggregate productivity?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 325-334, March.
  20. Song, Zheng Michael & Storesletten, Kjetil & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 2009. "Growing like China," CEPR Discussion Papers 7149, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  21. Carsten A. Holz, 2009. "No Razor's Edge: Reexamining Alwyn Young's Evidence for Increasing Interprovincial Trade Barriers in China," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(3), pages 599-616, August.
  22. Laura Alfaro & Andrew Charlton & Fabio Kanczuk, 2009. "Plant-Size Distribution and Cross-Country Income Differences," NBER Chapters, in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2008, pages 243-272 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2009. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(4), pages 1403-1448.
  24. Huang,Yasheng, 2008. "Capitalism with Chinese Characteristics," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521898102, November.
  25. S.K. Bhutani, 2009. "China and India," India Quarterly: A Journal of International Affairs, Indian Council of World Affairs, vol. 65(4), pages 383-391, October.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:red:issued:11-95. 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: (Christian Zimmermann)

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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.