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

Structural breaks in labor productivity growth: the United States vs. the European Union

  • Juan F. Jimeno


    (Banco de España
    Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)
    Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA))

  • Esther Moral


    (Banco de España)

  • Lorena Saiz


    (Banco de España)

There is a stark contrast between the recent evolution of labor productivity (and TFP) in the US and EU countries. In the US it accelerated around the mid-1990s and there is evidence of reversion to a high-growth regime. In some EU countries, while employment-population ratios started to rise after a period of stagnant employment, labor productivity (and TFP) decelerated. In this paper we apply univariate and multivariate methods, that have been used to detect structural breaks in productivity growth in the US economy, to EU data to confirm the existence of a significant permanent shift to lower productivity growth in some European countries around the mid-1990s. We find a structural break in mean labour productivity growth in the US around the mid-1990s (towards higher growth), in Continental Europe around the early 1990s (towards lower growth) and no evidence of structural breaks in the UK.

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:
File Function: First version, October 2006
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Banco de España & Working Papers Homepage in its series Working Papers with number 0625.

in new window

Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bde:wpaper:0625
Contact details of provider: Web page:

Web page:

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.:

as in new window
  1. Bart van Ark & Robert Inklaar & Robert H. McGuckin, 2003. "ICT and Productivity in Europe and the United States Where Do the Differences Come From?," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 49(3), pages 295-318.
  2. Zivot, Eric & Andrews, Donald W K, 1992. "Further Evidence on the Great Crash, the Oil-Price Shock, and the Unit-Root Hypothesis," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 10(3), pages 251-70, July.
  3. Donald W.K. Andrews & Werner Ploberger, 1992. "Optimal Tests When a Nuisance Parameter Is Present Only Under the Alternative," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1015, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  4. repec:dgr:rugggd:200363 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. James A. Kahn & Robert W. Rich, 2003. "Tracking the new economy: using growth theory to detect changes in trend productivity," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
  6. Perron, P, 1988. "The Great Crash, The Oil Price Shock And The Unit Root Hypothesis," Papers 338, Princeton, Department of Economics - Econometric Research Program.
  7. Benati, Luca, 2007. "Drift and breaks in labor productivity," Working Paper Series 0718, European Central Bank.
  8. Jushan Bai & Pierre Perron, 1998. "Estimating and Testing Linear Models with Multiple Structural Changes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(1), pages 47-78, January.
  9. Hansen, Bruce E., 1992. "Testing for parameter instability in linear models," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 517-533, August.
  10. Helmut Lütkepohl & Pentti Saikkonen & Carsten Trenkler, 2004. "Testing for the Cointegrating Rank of a VAR Process with Level Shift at Unknown Time," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(2), pages 647-662, 03.
  11. Timothy Cogley & Thomas J. Sargent, 2005. "Drift and Volatilities: Monetary Policies and Outcomes in the Post WWII U.S," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(2), pages 262-302, April.
  12. Olivier Blanchard, 2004. "The Economic Future of Europe," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 3-26, Fall.
  13. repec:dgr:rugccs:200311 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Bai, Jushan, 1997. "Estimating Multiple Breaks One at a Time," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(03), pages 315-352, June.
  15. Wasmer, Etienne, 2003. "Interpreting European and US Labour Market Differences: The Specificity of Human Capital Investments," CEPR Discussion Papers 3780, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Andrews, Donald W K, 1993. "Tests for Parameter Instability and Structural Change with Unknown Change Point," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(4), pages 821-56, July.
  17. Susanto Basu & John G. Fernald & Nicholas Oulton & Sylaja Srinivasan, 2003. "The Case of the Missing Productivity Growth: Or, Does Information Technology Explain why Productivity Accelerated in the US but not the UK?," NBER Working Papers 10010, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Ark, Bart van & Inklaar, Robert & McGuckin, Robert H., 2003. "ICT and productivity in Europe and the United States," CCSO Working Papers 200311, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
  19. Gregory, Allan W & Hansen, Bruce E, 1996. "Tests for Cointegration in Models with Regime and Trend Shifts," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 58(3), pages 555-60, August.
  20. Westerlund, Joakim, 2005. "Testing for Panel Cointegration with Multiple Structural Breaks," Working Papers 2005:12, Lund University, Department of Economics.
  21. Krueger, Dirk & Kumar, Krishna B., 2004. "US-Europe differences in technology-driven growth: quantifying the role of education," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 161-190, January.
  22. E. Paul Durrenberger, 2005. "Labour," Chapters, in: A Handbook of Economic Anthropology, chapter 8 Edward Elgar Publishing.
  23. Timmer, Marcel P. & Ypma, Gerard & Ark, Bart van der, 2003. "IT in the European Union: driving productivity divergence?," GGDC Research Memorandum 200363, Groningen Growth and Development Centre, University of Groningen.
  24. Laura Mayoral, 2007. "Minimum distance estimation of stationary and non-stationary ARFIMA processes," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 10(1), pages 124-148, 03.
  25. Henrik Hansen & Søren Johansen, 1999. "Some tests for parameter constancy in cointegrated VAR-models," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 2(2), pages 306-333.
  26. Hamilton, James D, 1989. "A New Approach to the Economic Analysis of Nonstationary Time Series and the Business Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 357-84, March.
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:bde:wpaper:0625. 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: (María Beiro. Electronic Dissemination of Information Unit. Research Department. Banco de España)

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.