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Heterogeneous Productivity Shocks, Elasticity of Substitution and Aggregate Fluctuations

  • Alessio, Moro
  • Rodolfo, Stucchi

We use a Dixit-Stiglitz setting to show that aggregate productivity fluctuations can be generated through changes in the dispersion of firms' productivity. When the elasticity of substitution among goods is larger than one, an increase in the dispersion raises aggregate productivity because firms at the top of the distribution produce most of output. When the elasticity is smaller than one, an increase in the dispersion reduces aggregate productivity because firms at the bottom of the distribution use most of inputs. We use individual firm data from Spanish manufacturing sectors to test the relationship between the dispersion of firms' productivity and aggregate productivity. The estimated coefficients are consistent with the predictions of the model: we find that an increase in the coefficient of variation of firms productivity of 1% increases aggregate productivity by 0.59% in sectors with an elasticity of substitution larger than one while the same increase in the coefficient of variation reduces aggregate productivity by 0.07% in sectors with an elasticity of substitution smaller than one.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 29032.

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Date of creation: Feb 2011
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:29032
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  1. Michael Horvath, 1998. "Cyclicality and Sectoral Linkages: Aggregate Fluctuations from Independent Sectoral Shocks," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(4), pages 781-808, October.
  2. Chad Syverson, 2001. "Market Structure and Productivity: A Concrete Example," Working Papers 01-06, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  3. Xu Yi & Nezih Guner & Gustavo Ventura, 2005. "Macroeconomic Implications of Size Dependent Policies," 2005 Meeting Papers 530, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  4. Nicholas Bloom & Max Floetotto & Nir Jaimovich & Itay Saporta-Eksten & Stephen Terry, 2013. "Really Uncertain Business Cycles," CEP Discussion Papers dp1195, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  5. Álvaro Escribano & Rodolfo Stucchi, 2011. "Catching up in total factor productivity through the business cycle: Evidence from Spanish manufacturing firms," Working Papers 2011-10, Instituto Madrileño de Estudios Avanzados (IMDEA) Ciencias Sociales.
  6. Diego Restuccia & Richard Rogerson, 2008. "Policy Distortions and Aggregate Productivity with Heterogeneous Plants," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(4), pages 707-720, October.
  7. Dupor, Bill, 1999. "Aggregation and irrelevance in multi-sector models," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 391-409, April.
  8. Vasco Carvalho, 2007. "Aggregate fluctuations and the network structure of intersectoral trade," Economics Working Papers 1206, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Oct 2010.
  9. Rachel Griffith & Jonathan Haskel & Andy Neely, 2006. "Why is Productivity so Dispersed?," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(4), pages 513-525, Winter.
  10. Ruediger Bachmann & Christian Bayer, 2009. "Firm-Specific Productivity Risk over the Business Cycle: Facts and Aggregate Implications," 2009 Meeting Papers 869, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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