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Rising Skill Premium?: The Roles of Capital-Skill Complementarity and Sectoral Shifts in a Two-Sector Economy

Author

Listed:
  • Naoko Hara

    (Bank of Japan)

  • Munechika Katayama

    (Kyoto University)

  • Ryo Kato

    (Bank of Japan)

Abstract

Empirical studies report a marked dispersion in skill-premium changes across economies over the past few decades. Structural models in early studies successfully replicate the increases in skill premiums in many economies, while some other cases with a decline in the skill premium are yet to be explained. To this end, we develop a two-sector (i.e., manufacturing and non-manufacturing) general equilibrium model with skilled and unskilled labor, in which degrees of capital-skill complementarity differ across sectors. Based on the estimated structural parameters, we show that a decline in capital-skill complementarity in the non-manufacturing sector can provide a consistent explanation for the following aspects of the Japanese data at both the aggregate and industry levels: (i) a decline in the skill premium, (ii) widening of the sectoral wage gap due to a rise in manufacturing wages and decline in non-manufacturing wages, and (iii) an increase in the unskilled labor share in the non-manufacturing sector. We interpret that this change reflects compositional effects and uneven technology adoption of firms within non-manufacturing.

Suggested Citation

  • Naoko Hara & Munechika Katayama & Ryo Kato, 2014. "Rising Skill Premium?: The Roles of Capital-Skill Complementarity and Sectoral Shifts in a Two-Sector Economy," Bank of Japan Working Paper Series 14-E-9, Bank of Japan.
  • Handle: RePEc:boj:bojwps:wp14e09
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Linnea Polgreen & Pedro Silos, 2008. "Capital-Skill Complementarity and Inequality: A Sensitivity Analysis," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(2), pages 302-313, April.
    2. Matthew J. Lindquist, 2004. "Capital-Skill Complementarity and Inequality Over the Business Cycle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 7(3), pages 519-540, July.
    3. Marquis, Milton & Trehan, Bharat, 2010. "Relative productivity growth and the secular "decline" of U.S. manufacturing," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 67-74, February.
    4. Almut Balleer & Thijs van Rens, 2013. "Skill-Biased Technological Change and the Business Cycle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(4), pages 1222-1237, October.
    5. John Geweke, 1999. "Using simulation methods for bayesian econometric models: inference, development,and communication," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(1), pages 1-73.
    6. Fernando Parro, 2013. "Capital-Skill Complementarity and the Skill Premium in a Quantitative Model of Trade," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 72-117, April.
    7. Kondo, Ayako & Naganuma, Saori, 2015. "Inter-industry labor reallocation and task distance," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 127-147.
    8. John Geweke, 1999. "Using Simulation Methods for Bayesian Econometric Models," Computing in Economics and Finance 1999 832, Society for Computational Economics.
    9. Sugo, Tomohiro & Ueda, Kozo, 2008. "Estimating a dynamic stochastic general equilibrium model for Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 476-502, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Capital-skill Complementarity; Skill Premium; Two-sector DSGE Model; Bayesian Estimation;

    JEL classification:

    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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