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Trade's Impact on the Labor Share: Evidence from German and Italian Regions

  • Claudia M. Buch
  • Paola Monti
  • Farid Toubal

Has the labor share declined? And what is the impact of international trade? These questions are not only relevant in an international context they also matter for understanding the regional distribution of incomes in a given country. In this paper, we study two regions with trade exposures that differ from the rest of the country, and which display distinct changes in the labor share. East German and Southern Italian regions have a degree of international openness which is below the countries’ averages. At the same time, there has been a more pronounced decline in the labor share in East Germany than in West Germany. In Southern Italy, the labor share has increased in recent years. We show that increased trade openness is not the main culprit behind changing labor shares.

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File URL: http://www.iaw.edu/RePEc/iaw/pdf/iaw_dp_46.pdf
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Paper provided by Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung (IAW) in its series IAW Discussion Papers with number 46.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iaw:iawdip:46
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  1. Pasaran, M.H. & Im, K.S. & Shin, Y., 1995. "Testing for Unit Roots in Heterogeneous Panels," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9526, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  2. Robert E. Baldwin, 2004. "Openness and Growth: What's the Empirical Relationship?," NBER Chapters, in: Challenges to Globalization: Analyzing the Economics, pages 499-526 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  11. Jörg Breitung & M. Hashem Pesaran, 2005. "Unit Roots and Cointegration in Panels," IEPR Working Papers 05.32, Institute of Economic Policy Research (IEPR).
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  13. Bentolila Samuel & Saint-Paul Gilles, 2003. "Explaining Movements in the Labor Share," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-33, October.
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