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Inferring Relative Factor Price Changes from Quantitative Data

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  • Robert E. Baldwin

Abstract

This paper considers the appropriateness of using such quantitative measures as changes in the factor content of trade and the behavior of factor proportions within versus among industries to draw inferences about changes in relative factor prices. The conclusion reached is that only under special assumptions are such linkages justified. Using these special assumptions of Cobb-Douglas or CES production functions and preferences, a final section of the paper presents empirical estimates of how trade may have affected the U.S. wage gap between more educated and less educated workers in recent years.

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  • Robert E. Baldwin, 1999. "Inferring Relative Factor Price Changes from Quantitative Data," NBER Working Papers 7019, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7019 Note: ITI
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    1. Lawrence F. Katz & Kevin M. Murphy, 1992. "Changes in Relative Wages, 1963–1987: Supply and Demand Factors," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(1), pages 35-78.
    2. Eli Bekman & John Bound & Stephen Machin, 1998. "Implications of Skill-Biased Technological Change: International Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1245-1279.
    3. Jeffrey D. Sachs & Howard J. Shatz, 1994. "Trade and Jobs in Manufacturing," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(1), pages 1-84.
    4. Deardorff, A.V., 1997. "Factor Prices and the Factor Content of Trade Revisited: What's the Use?," Working Papers 409, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    5. Eli Berman & John Bound & Zvi Griliches, 1994. "Changes in the Demand for Skilled Labor within U. S. Manufacturing: Evidence from the Annual Survey of Manufactures," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(2), pages 367-397.
    6. Hakura, D. & Deardorff, A.V., 1993. "Trade and Wages: What Are the Questions?," Working Papers 341, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    7. Deardorff, Alan V. & Staiger, Robert W., 1988. "An interpretation of the factor content of trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1-2), pages 93-107, February.
    8. repec:fth:michin:409 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Cited by:

    1. Michael Pflüger, 2003. "Trade, Technology and Labour Markets: Empirical Controversies in the Light of the Jones Model," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 328, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.

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