IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/bsl/wpaper/2012-08.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Skill-Biased Technological Change and the Real Exchange Rate

Author

Listed:
  • Gubler, Matthias
  • Sax, Christoph

    () (University of Basel)

Abstract

We sketch a model that shows how skill-biased technological change may reverse the classic Balassa-Samuelson effect, leading to a negative relationship between the productivity in the tradable sector and the real exchange rate. In a small open economy, export goods are produced with capital, high-skilled and low-skilled labor, and traded for imported consumption goods. Non-tradable services are produced with low-skilled labor only. A rise in the productivity of capital has two effects: (1) It may reduce the demand for labor in the tradable sector if the substitutability of low-skilled labor and capital in the tradable sector is high; and (2) it increases the demand for non-tradables and its labor input. Overall demand for low-skilled labor declines if the labor force of the tradable sector is large relative to the labor force of the non-tradable sector. This leads to lower wages and thus to lower prices and a real exchange rate depreciation.

Suggested Citation

  • Gubler, Matthias & Sax, Christoph, 2012. "Skill-Biased Technological Change and the Real Exchange Rate," Working papers 2012/08, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
  • Handle: RePEc:bsl:wpaper:2012/08
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/61599/1/20180307162006_5aa00326b31ef.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bordo, Michael D. & Choudhri, Ehsan U. & Fazio, Giorgio & MacDonald, Ronald, 2017. "The real exchange rate in the long run: Balassa-Samuelson effects reconsidered," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 69-92.
    2. Jean-Marc Natal & Tommaso Mancini Griffoli & Christoph Meyer & Attilio Zanetti, 2015. "Determinants of the Swiss Franc Real Exchange Rate," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 151(IV), pages 299-331, December.
    3. Konrad Adler & Christian Grisse, 2017. "Thousands of BEERs: Take your pick," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(5), pages 1078-1104, November.
    4. Ehsan U. Choudhri & Lawrence L. Schembri, 2010. "Productivity, the Terms of Trade, and the Real Exchange Rate: Balassa-Samuelson Hypothesis Revisited," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(5), pages 924-936, November.
    5. John Duffy & Chris Papageorgiou & Fidel Perez-Sebastian, 2004. "Capital-Skill Complementarity? Evidence from a Panel of Countries," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 327-344, February.
    6. Gianluca Benigno & Christoph Thoenissen, 2003. "Equilibrium Exchange Rates and Supply-Side Performance," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(486), pages 103-124, March.
    7. Sax, Christoph & Gubler, Matthias, 2011. "The Balassa-Samuelson Effect Reversed: New Evidence from OECD Countries," Working papers 2011/09, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
    8. Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz, 1998. "The Origins of Technology-Skill Complementarity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(3), pages 693-732.
    9. James, John A. & Skinner, Jonathan S., 1985. "The Resolution of the Labor-Scarcity Paradox," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 45(03), pages 513-540, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Bodart, Vincent & Carpantier, Jean-François, 2016. "Real exchange rates and skills," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 305-319.
    2. Bordo, Michael D. & Choudhri, Ehsan U. & Fazio, Giorgio & MacDonald, Ronald, 2017. "The real exchange rate in the long run: Balassa-Samuelson effects reconsidered," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 69-92.
    3. Sax, Christoph & Gubler, Matthias, 2011. "The Balassa-Samuelson Effect Reversed: New Evidence from OECD Countries," Working papers 2011/09, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Real Exchange Rate; Balassa-Samuelson Hypothesis; Skillbiased Technological Change; General Equilibrium;

    JEL classification:

    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:bsl:wpaper:2012/08. 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: (WWZ). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/wwzbsch.html .

    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.