IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Americans Do I.T. Better: US Multinationals and the Productivity Miracle

  • Nicholas Bloom
  • Raffaella Sadun
  • John Van Reenen

The US has experienced a sustained increase in productivity growth since the mid-1990s, particularly in sectors that intensively use information technologies (IT). This has not occurred in Europe. If the US "productivity miracle" is due to a natural advantage of being located in the US then we would not expect to see any evidence of it for US establishments located abroad. This paper shows in fact that US multinationals operating in the UK do have higher productivity than non-US multinationals in the UK, and this is primarily due to the higher productivity of their IT. Furthermore, establishments that are taken over by US multinationals increase the productivity of their IT, whereas observationally identical establishments taken over by non-US multinationals do not. One explanation for these patterns is that US firms are organized in a way that allows them to use new technologies more efficiently. A model of endogenously chosen organizational form and IT is developed to explain these new micro and macro findings.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w13085.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 13085.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: May 2007
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Nicholas Bloom & Raffaella Sadun & John Van Reenen, 2012. "Americans Do IT Better: US Multinationals and the Productivity Miracle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 167-201, February.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:13085
Note: LS PR EFG ITI IO
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Web page: http://www.nber.org
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Van Reenen, John & Caroli, Eve, 2001. "Skill-Biased Organizational Change? Evidence from a panel of British and French establishments," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/10093, Paris Dauphine University.
  2. Nick Bloom & John Van Reenen, 2006. "Measuring and Explaining Management Practices Across Firms and Countries," CEP Discussion Papers dp0716, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  3. Susanto Basu & John G. Fernald & Nicholas Oulton & Sylaja Srinivasan, 2003. "The case of the missing productivity growth: or, does information technology explain why productivity accelerated in the United States but not the United Kingdom?," Working Paper Series WP-03-08, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  4. Kevin J. Stiroh, 2001. "Information technology and the U.S. productivity revival: what do the industry data say?," Staff Reports 115, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  5. Richard Blundell & Stephen Bond, 2000. "GMM Estimation with persistent panel data: an application to production functions," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(3), pages 321-340.
  6. Stephen D. Oliner & Daniel E. Sichel, 2000. "The resurgence of growth in the late 1990s: is information technology the story?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2000-20, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  7. Tor Jakob Klette & Zvi Griliches, 1994. "The Inconsistency of Common Scales Estimators when Output Prices are Unobserved and Endogenous," Discussion Papers 127, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  8. R Blundell & Steven Bond, . "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data model," Economics Papers W14&104., Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  9. Chiara Criscuolo & Ralf Martin, 2005. "Multinationals and US Productivity Leadership: Evidence from Great Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0672, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  10. Steven J. Davis & John Haltiwanger & Ron Jarmin & Javier Miranda, 2006. "Volatility and Dispersion in Business Growth Rates: Publicly Traded versus Privately Held Firms," NBER Working Papers 12354, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Canice Prendergast, 2002. "The Tenuous Trade-off between Risk and Incentives," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(5), pages 1071-1102, October.
  12. Laura Abramovsky & Rachel Griffith, 2009. "ICT, corporate restructuring and productivity," IFS Working Papers W09/10, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  13. Nina Pavcnik, 2000. "Trade Liberalization, Exit, and Productivity Improvements: Evidence from Chilean Plants," NBER Working Papers 7852, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Brynjolfsson, Erik & Hitt, Lorin M., 2004. "Computing Productivity: Firm-Level Evidence," Working papers 4210-01, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  15. Timmer, Marcel P. & Ypma, Gerard & Ark, Bart van der, 2003. "IT in the European Union: driving productivity divergence?," GGDC Research Memorandum 200363, Groningen Growth and Development Centre, University of Groningen.
  16. Robert C. Feenstra & Christopher R. Knittel, 2004. "Re-Assessing the U.S. Quality Adjustment to Computer Prices: The Role of Durability and Changing Software," NBER Working Papers 10857, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Timothy F. Bresnahan & Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin M. Hitt, 2002. "Information Technology, Workplace Organization, And The Demand For Skilled Labor: Firm-Level Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(1), pages 339-376, February.
  18. Mark E. Doms & Wendy E. Dunn & Stephen D. Oliner & Daniel E. Sichel, 2003. "How fast do personal computers depreciate? concepts and new estimates," Working Paper Series 2003-20, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  19. Bloom, Nicholas & Bond, Stephen Roy & Van Reenen, John, 2003. "Uncertainty and Company Investment Dynamics: Empirical Evidence for UK Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 4025, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  20. Gordon, Robert J, 2004. "Why Was Europe Left at the Station when America's Productivity Locomotive Departed?," CEPR Discussion Papers 4416, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  21. Gust, Christopher & Marquez, Jaime, 2004. "International comparisons of productivity growth: the role of information technology and regulatory practices," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 33-58, February.
  22. Chris Forman & Avi Goldfarb & Shane Greenstein, 2009. "The Internet and Local Wages: Convergence or Divergence?," NBER Working Papers 14750, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Giuseppe Nicoletti & Stefano Scarpetta & Olivier Boylaud, 2000. "Summary Indicators of Product Market Regulation with an Extension to Employment Protection Legislation," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 226, OECD Publishing.
  24. George P. Baker & Thomas N. Hubbard, 2004. "Contractibility and Asset Ownership: On-board Computers and Governance in U. S. Trucking," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(4), pages 1443-1479, November.
  25. Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin M. Hitt, 2000. "Beyond Computation: Information Technology, Organizational Transformation and Business Performance," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 23-48, Fall.
  26. Olivier Blanchard, 2004. "The Economic Future of Europe," NBER Working Papers 10310, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. Juan Botero & Simeon Djankov & Rafael Porta & Florencio C. Lopez-De-Silanes, 2004. "The Regulation of Labor," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(4), pages 1339-1382, November.
  28. Larry W. Hunter & Annette Bernhardt & Katherine L. Hughes & Eva Skuratowicz, 2000. "It's Not Just the ATMs: Technology, Firm Strategies, Jobs, and Earnings in Retail Banking," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 00-31, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
  29. Nick Bloom, 2006. "The Impact of Uncertainty Shocks: Firm Level Estimation and a 9/11 Simulation," CEP Discussion Papers dp0718, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  30. Dale W. Jorgenson, 2001. "Information Technology and the U. S. Economy," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1911, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  31. Crespi, Gustavo & Criscuolo, Chiara & Haskel, Jonathan, 2007. "Information Technology, Organisational Change and Productivity," CEPR Discussion Papers 6105, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  32. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  33. John Haltiwanger & Ron Jarmin & Thorsten Schank, 2003. "Productivity, Investment in ICT and Market Experimentation: Micro Evidence from Germany and the U.S," Working Papers 03-06, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  34. Dale W. Jorgenson, 2001. "Information Technology and the U.S. Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 1-32, March.
  35. Mark E. Doms & J . Bradford Jensen, 1998. "Comparing Wages, Skills, and Productivity between Domestically and Foreign-Owned Manufacturing Establishments in the United States," NBER Chapters, in: Geography and Ownership as Bases for Economic Accounting, pages 235-258 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  36. Benfratello, Luigi & Sembenelli, Alessandro, 2006. "Foreign ownership and productivity: Is the direction of causality so obvious?," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 733-751, July.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:

  1. Americans Do IT Better: US Multinationals and the Productivity Miracle (AER 2012) in ReplicationWiki

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:13085. 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: ()

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.