The Mix and Scale of Factors with Irreversibility and Fixed Costs of Investment
When factors of production can be adjusted costlessly, the mix of factors can be considered separately from their scale. We examine factor choice and utilization when investment is irreversible and subject to a fixed cost, so that the capital stock is a quasi-fixed factor that is adjusted infrequently and by discrete amounts. We derive and analyze analytic approximations for optimal investment behavior, and show how the quasi-fixity of capital eliminates the dichotomy between factor mix and scale. We show that the quasi-fixity of capital can give rise to labor hoarding, even when labor is a purely flexible factor.
|Date of creation:||Aug 1997|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Abel, Andrew B. & Eberly, Janice C., 1998. "The mix and scale of factors with irreversibility and fixed costs of investment," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 101-135, June.|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
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- Ricardo J. Caballero & Eduardo M. R. A. Engel & John C. Haltiwanger, 1995. "Plant-Level Adjustment and Aggregate Investment Dynamics," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 26(2), pages 1-54.
- Avinash Dixit, 1991. "Analytical Approximations in Models of Hysteresis," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(1), pages 141-151.
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