IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/ucp/jpolec/v99y1991i3p439-59.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Procyclical Labor Productivity and Competing Theories of the Business Cycle: Some Evidence from Interwar U.S. Manufacturing Industries

Author

Listed:
  • Bernanke, Ben S
  • Parkinson, Martin L

Abstract

The authors study the phenomenon of short-run increasing returns to labor (SRIRL) in a sample of ten interwar U.S. manufacturing industries. Their authors main findings are that SRIRL was common in the interwar period and that the pattern of SRIRL across industries was similar to that observed in the postwar period. The authors argue that, since presumably the Depression was not caused by technical regress, these findings are inconsistent with the claim of real business cycle theorists that SRIRL are, in general, due to procyclical technological shocks. They propose tests for discriminating between two other leading explanations of SRIRL, but find that their conclusions differ by industry. Copyright 1991 by University of Chicago Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Bernanke, Ben S & Parkinson, Martin L, 1991. "Procyclical Labor Productivity and Competing Theories of the Business Cycle: Some Evidence from Interwar U.S. Manufacturing Industries," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 439-459, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:99:y:1991:i:3:p:439-59
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/261761
    File Function: full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers. See http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE for details.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Fay, Jon A & Medoff, James L, 1985. "Labor and Output over the Business Cycle: Some Direct Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 638-655, September.
    2. Christopher A. Sims, 1974. "Output and Labor Input in Manufacturing," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 5(3), pages 695-736.
    3. Julio J. Rotemberg & Lawrence H. Summers, 1988. "Labor Hoarding, Inflexible Prices, and Procyclical Productivity," NBER Working Papers 2591, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Kevin M. Murphy & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1989. "Building Blocks of Market Clearing Business Cycle Models," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1989, Volume 4, pages 247-302 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. R. J. Ball & E. B. A. St Cyr, 1966. "Short Term Employment Functions in British Manufacturing Industry," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 33(3), pages 179-207.
    6. Robert S. Chirinko, 1993. "Non-convexities, labor hoarding, technology shocks, and procyclical productivity: a structural econometric approach," Research Working Paper 93-08, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    7. Walter Y. Oi, 1962. "Labor as a Quasi-Fixed Factor," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 538-538.
    8. Gary S. Becker, 1962. "Investment in Human Capital: A Theoretical Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 1-9.
    9. Daniel Creamer & Sergei Dobrovolsky & Israel Borenstein, 1960. "Capital in Manufacturing and Mining: Its Formation and Financing," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number crea60-1.
    10. Hunter, Helen Manning, 1982. "The Role of Business Liquidity During the Great Depression and Afterwards: Differences Between Large and Small Firms," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 42(04), pages 883-902, December.
    11. Ricardo J. Caballero & Richard K. Lyons, 1989. "The Role of External Economies in U.S. Manufacturing," NBER Working Papers 3033, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 1989. "A computationally simple heteroskedasticity and serial correlation robust standard error for the linear regression model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 239-243, December.
    13. F. P. R. Brechling, 1965. "The Relationship between Output and Employment in British Manufacturing Industries," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 32(3), pages 187-216.
    14. King, Robert G & Plosser, Charles I, 1984. "Money, Credit, and Prices in a Real Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 363-380, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:99:y:1991:i:3:p:439-59. 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: (Journals Division). General contact details of provider: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE/ .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.