Increasing Returns versus Externalities: Pro-Cyclical Productivity in US and Japan
This paper investigates the phenomenon of pro-cyclical productivity and attempts to discriminate among several competing explanations given in the literature. The study focuses on the United States and Japan. The different industrial relations in these two economics cast a sharper light on the pro-cyclical productivity debate. Although the labour boarding hypothesis has proved to be quite robust, my results suggest that the role of external economies should not be underestimated, especially in the case of Japan.
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