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Offshoring and Labor Income Risk: An Empirical Investigation

  • Jan Hogrefe
  • Yao Yao

This paper analyses how increased offshoring impacts on labor income risk. It is therefore distinct from a large number of studies explaining the level effects of globalization on the labor market in that it takes a look at effects on the variability of incomes. It provides an assessment that directly connects labor income risk and offshoring trends in a panel setting at the industry level. Importantly, we distinguish between transitory and permanent shocks to individual income. Permanent income risk is defined as variance of shocks to income that do not fade out over time. Contrary to transitory short-term fluctuations, it is furthermore assumed to be uninsurable. It thus has a particular relevance for individual welfare. Our findings suggest that offshoring tends to lower permanent income risk. This effect is particularly strong for offshoring to low-income destinations. Hence, there could be potential aggregate welfare gains when domestic firms increasingly offshore production to foreign countries.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.413266.de/diw_sp0515.pdf
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Paper provided by DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) in its series SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research with number 515.

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Length: 30 p.
Date of creation: 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp515
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  1. Dustmann, Christian & Ludsteck, Johannes & Schönberg, Uta, 2007. "Revisiting the German Wage Structure," IZA Discussion Papers 2685, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Costas Meghir & Luigi Pistaferri, 2004. "Income Variance Dynamics and Heterogeneity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(1), pages 1-32, 01.
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  8. Mine Zeynep Senses & Pravin Krishna, 2009. "International Trade and Labor Income Risk in the United States," 2009 Meeting Papers 471, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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  13. Senses, Mine Zeynep, 2010. "The effects of offshoring on the elasticity of labor demand," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 89-98, May.
  14. Gert G. Wagner & Joachim R. Frick & Jürgen Schupp, 2007. "The German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP): Scope, Evolution and Enhancements," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 1, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  15. David K. Levine & William Zame, 2001. "Does Market Incompleteness Matter," Levine's Working Paper Archive 78, David K. Levine.
  16. Carroll, Christopher D. & Samwick, Andrew A., 1997. "The nature of precautionary wealth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 41-71, September.
  17. Ingo Geishecker, 2006. "Does Outsourcing to Central and Eastern Europe Really Threaten Manual Workers' Jobs in Germany?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(5), pages 559-583, 05.
  18. Buch, Claudia M. & Lipponer, Alexander, 2010. "Volatile multinationals? Evidence from the labor demand of German firms," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 345-353, April.
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