Cross-country Variation in Factor Shares and its Implications for Development Accounting
The stability of factor shares has long been considered one of the “stylized facts” of macroeconomics. However, the relationship between cross-country factor shares and economic development is dependent on how factor shares are measured. Most factor share studies acknowledge only two factors of production: total capital and total labor. The failure to acknowledge more than two factors yields misleading results. Recent theoretical work predicts a systematic relationship between the stage of economic development and non-reproducible and reproducible factor shares. I disentangle physical capital’s share from natural capital’s share, and I disentangle human capital’s share from unskilled labor’s share. The results reveal that nonreproducible factor shares decrease with the stage of economic development, and reproducible factor shares increase with the stage of economic development. Studies relying on the macroeconomic paradigm of constant factor shares should be revisited. Development accounting nearly always assumes the constancy of factor shares. I perform the development accounting exercise but allow factor shares to vary and distinguish between reproducible and nonreproducible factors. My approach yields results that stand in stark contrast to those previously attained. The general consensus is that at least half of the cross-country variation in output per worker is attributable to cross-country variation in the TFP residual. With my approach, the majority of variation in output per worker accrues to factor shares, specifically physical capital’s share and natural capital’s share. TFP’s explanatory power decreases by more than 30 percentage points. This evidence does not, however, diminish the role of technical change. Rather, the evidence indicates the importance of acknowledging a new type of technical change, one that impacts factor shares. Key Words: Factor Shares, TFP residual
|Date of creation:||2009|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Thelma C. Raley Hall, Boone, North Carolina 28608|
Web page: http://economics.appstate.edu/
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Francesco Caselli, 2004.
"Accounting for Cross-Country Income Differences,"
NBER Working Papers
10828, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Douglas Gollin, 2002.
"Getting Income Shares Right,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(2), pages 458-474, April.
- Jones, L.E. & manuelli, R.E., 1994.
"The Sources of Growth,"
9428, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
- Francesco Caselli & James Feyrer, 2005.
"The Marginal Product of Capital,"
NBER Working Papers
11551, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Caselli, Francesco & Feyrer, James, 2005. "The Marginal Product of Capital," CEPR Discussion Papers 5203, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Francesco Caselli & James Feyrer, 2006. "The Marginal Product of Capital," CEP Discussion Papers dp0735, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Francesco Caselli & James Feyrer, 2006. "The marginal product of capital," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3560, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
- Michele Boldrin & David K Levine, 2001.
"Factor Saving Innovation,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
625018000000000088, David K. Levine.
- Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
- Michael J. Boskin & Lawrence J. Lau, 2000. "Generalized Solow-Neutral Technical Progress and Postwar Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 8023, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Scott L. Baier & Gerald P. Dwyer & Robert Tamura, 2006.
"How Important are Capital and Total Factor Productivity for Economic Growth?,"
Western Economic Association International, vol. 44(1), pages 23-49, January.
- Scott L. Baier & Gerald P. Dwyer & Robert Tamura, 2002. "How important are capital and total factor productivity for economic growth?," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2002-2, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
- Joseph Zeira, 2006.
"Machines as Engines of Growth,"
DEGIT Conference Papers
c011_059, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
- John J. Seater & Pietro Peretto, 2007.
"Factor-Eliminating Technical Change,"
2007 Meeting Papers
272, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- George Psacharopoulos & Harry Anthony Patrinos, 2004.
"Returns to investment in education: a further update,"
Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(2), pages 111-134.
- Psacharopoulos, George & Patrinos, Harry Anthony, 2002. "Returns to investment in education : a further update," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2881, The World Bank.
- Oded Galor & David N. Weil, 1998. "Population, Technology, and Growth: From the Malthusian Stagnation to the Demographic Transition and Beyond," Working Papers 98-3, Brown University, Department of Economics, revised 19 Aug 1998.
- Hernando Zuleta, 2007.
"Why labor income shares seem to be constant?,"
DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO
003779, UNIVERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO.
- Hernando Zuleta, 2007. "Why labor income shares seem to be constant?," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(4), pages 551-557.
- Hernando Zuleta, 2008.
"An empirical note on factor shares,"
The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development,
Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(3), pages 379-390.
- Sato, Ryuzo, 1970. "The Estimation of Biased Technical Progress and the Production Function," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 11(2), pages 179-208, June.
- Ben S. Bernanke & Refet S. Gurkaynak, 2001.
"Is Growth Exogenous? Taking Mankiw, Romer and Weil Seriously,"
NBER Working Papers
8365, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ben S. Bernanke & Refet S. Gürkaynak, 2002. "Is Growth Exogenous? Taking Mankiw, Romer, and Weil Seriously," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2001, Volume 16, pages 11-72 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Vollrath, Dietrich, 2009. "How important are dual economy effects for aggregate productivity?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 325-334, March.
- Gary D. Hansen & Edward C. Prescott, 1999.
"Malthus to Solow,"
257, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Peter Klenow & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 1997. "The Neoclassical Revival in Growth Economics: Has It Gone Too Far?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 73-114 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Hernando Zuleta, 2008.
"Factor Saving Innovations and Factor Income Shares,"
Review of Economic Dynamics,
Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(4), pages 836-851, October.
- Hernando Zuleta, 2006. "Factor saving innovations and factor income shares," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO 002706, UNIVERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO.
- Francesco Caselli, 2005. "Accounting for cross-country income differences," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3567, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
- Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 1993.
"International Comparisons of Educational Attainment,"
NBER Working Papers
4349, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Barro, Robert J. & Lee, Jong-Wha, 1993. "International comparisons of educational attainment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 363-394, December.
- C. E. Ferguson, 1965. "The Elasticity of Substitution and the Savings Ratio in the Neoclassical Theory of Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(3), pages 465-471.
- Duffy, John & Papageorgiou, Chris, 2000. "A Cross-Country Empirical Investigation of the Aggregate Production Function Specification," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 87-120, March.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:apl:wpaper:09-07. 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: (O. Ashton Morgan)
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.