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An Empirical Model of Factor Adjustment Dynamics


  • Contreras, Juan


This paper investigates how firms dynamically adjust their use of capital, labor, energy, and materials when there are both smooth and lumpy adjustment possibilities and interrelation among adjustments. The Colombian Annual Census of Manufacturing provides evidence of these kinds of adjustment. The innovation of this paper lies in three areas: in considering the joint adjustment and interrelation of labor and capital at the establishment level; in describing the dynamic adjustment of all the production factors; and in a rich description of adjustment costs, which includes disruption of the production process and reallocation of internal resources, and fixed costs of installing capital and creating or discontinuing a job vacancy. The model also includes both a convex cost component, aimed at capturing smooth adjustments, and congestion effects, which means that it is more costly for firms to adjust capital and labor at the same time than it is to adjust them separately. Using a simulated method of moments, the study finds empirical support for the existence of disruption costs for capital and labor, the existence of convex costs for capital but not for labor, and the existence of congestion effects. An important implication of the model is that, in response to shocks, firms decide to adjust either capital or labor alone or both, depending on the initial capital to labor ratio and the magnitude of the shocks.

Suggested Citation

  • Contreras, Juan, 2006. "An Empirical Model of Factor Adjustment Dynamics," MPRA Paper 9797, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:9797

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Liu, Yanping, 2015. "Capital Adjustment Costs: Implications for Domestic and Export Sales Dynamics," Discussion Papers in Economics 26600, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    2. Russell Cooper & Jonathan Willis, 2009. "The Cost of Labor Adjustment: Inferences from the Gap," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 12(4), pages 632-647, October.
    3. Fabio Verona, 2014. "Investment Dynamics with Information Costs," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 46(8), pages 1627-1656, December.
    4. Faccini, Renato & Ortigueira, Salvador, 2010. "Labor-market volatility in the search-and-matching model: The role of investment-specific technology shocks," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 34(8), pages 1509-1527, August.
    5. Liu, Yanping, 2015. "Capital Adjustment Costs: Implications for Domestic and Export Sales Dynamics," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 529, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.

    More about this item


    Factor adjustment; capital and employment adjustment; simulated method of moments; capital and employment interaction; adjustment costs;

    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
    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity
    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • L60 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - General


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