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Products and Productivity

  • Andrew Bernard
  • Stephen Redding
  • Peter Schott

When firms make decisions about which product to manufacture at a more disaggregated level than observed in the data, measured firm productivity will reflect both true differences in productivity and non-random decisions about which products to manufacture. This paper examines a model of industry equilibrium where firms endogenously sort across products. We use the model to characterize the direction and magnitude of the resulting bias in productivity and to trace the implications for evaluating the aggregate effects of policy reforms such as industry deregulation. The endogenous sorting of firms across products provides a new source of reallocation and leads to biased measures of deregulation’s impact on firm and aggregate productivity.

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File URL: ftp://ftp2.census.gov/ces/wp/2008/CES-WP-08-22.pdf
File Function: First version, 2008
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau in its series Working Papers with number 08-22.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:08-22
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