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Employment Effects of Skill Biased Technological Change when Benefits are Linked to Per-Capita Income

  • Matthias Weiss

    ()

    (Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA))

This paper studies the employment effects of technological change when benefits are endogenous. If the (i) level of welfare aid depends on the general income level in the economy and (ii) wages for unskilled workers cannot fall below the level of welfare aid, there is a link between the wage for unskilled labor and the productivity of skilled labor. An increase in the latter will lead to an increase in average income and hence the level of welfare aid. This in turn leads unions to ask for higher wages for unskilled workers. Technological change is shown to have employment effects (only) if it is skill-biased and if this link exists.

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Paper provided by Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy in its series MEA discussion paper series with number 04043.

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Date of creation: 22 Jan 2004
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Handle: RePEc:mea:meawpa:04043
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  1. David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1997. "Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed the Labor Market?," NBER Working Papers 5956, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Nickell, Stephen & Bell, Brian, 1996. "Changes in the Distribution of Wages and Unemployment in OECD Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 302-08, May.
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  4. Paul Krugman, 1994. "Past and prospective causes of high unemployment," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue Q IV, pages 23-43.
  5. Daron Acemoglu, 2002. "Technical Change, Inequality, and the Labor Market," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(1), pages 7-72, March.
  6. Alan Manning, 1992. "Wage Bargaining and the Phillips Curve: The Identification and Specification of Aggregate Wage Equations," CEP Discussion Papers dp0062, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  7. Donald R. Davis, 1996. "Does European Unemployment Prop Up American Wages?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1752, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
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  10. David H. Autor & Mark G. Duggan, 2003. "The Rise In The Disability Rolls And The Decline In Unemployment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(1), pages 157-205, February.
  11. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521576475 is not listed on IDEAS
  12. Akerlof, George A & Yellen, Janet L, 1990. "The Fair Wage-Effort Hypothesis and Unemployment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(2), pages 255-83, May.
  13. Weiss, Yoram & Fershtman, Chaim, 1998. "Social status and economic performance:: A survey," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 801-820, May.
  14. Peter Gottschalk & Timothy M. Smeeding, 1997. "Cross-National Comparisons of Earnings and Income Inequality," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(2), pages 633-687, June.
  15. Levy, Frank & Murnane, Richard J, 1992. "U.S. Earnings Levels and Earnings Inequality: A Review of Recent Trends and Proposed Explanations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 1333-81, September.
  16. Richard B. Freeman, 1995. "Are Your Wages Set in Beijing?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(3), pages 15-32, Summer.
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