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Experience vs. Obsolescence: A Vintage-Human-Capital Model

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  • Kredler, Matthias

Abstract

I combine an infinite-horizon version of Ben-Porath’s (1967) model of human-capital accumulation with a vintage structure as in Chari & Hopenhayn (1991). Different skill levelsinside a vintage are complementary in production. Vintage-specific human capital is accumulated based on workers’ optimal strategies and is lost when the technology is phased out by an endogenous firm decision. I establish equivalence between competitive equilibrium and a planner’s problem. It is shown that returns to skill are highest in young vintages. Accelerated technological change shortens the life cycle of a technology and speeds up obsolescence; the premium on tenure rises because more workers are concentrated in young technologies with high skill premia. A calibration exercise comparing two steady states shows that the model quantitatively accounts for the changes in the experience premium, earnings dispersion and earnings turbulence in German data.

Suggested Citation

  • Kredler, Matthias, 2008. "Experience vs. Obsolescence: A Vintage-Human-Capital Model," MPRA Paper 10200, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:10200
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Boyan Jovanovic, 2009. "When should firms invest in old capital?," International Journal of Economic Theory, The International Society for Economic Theory, vol. 5(1), pages 107-123, March.
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    3. Giovanni Mastrobuoni & Filippo Taddei, 2011. "Age Before Beauty? Productivity and Work vs. Seniority and Early Retirement," CeRP Working Papers 120, Center for Research on Pensions and Welfare Policies, Turin (Italy).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Vintage human capital; age-earnings profiles; partial differential equations;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • C63 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computational Techniques
    • J01 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics: General

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