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Tradability and Productivity Growth Differentials Across EU Member States

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  • Klaus S. Friesenbichler

    (WIFO)

  • Christian Glocker

    (WIFO)

Abstract

This study examines the lack of convergence among EU countries from a structural perspective. We apply the tradable-non-tradable framework (T-NT) to evaluate the heterogeneity in labour productivity before and after the great recession. We find that, across all countries, non-tradables were less relevant for aggregate productivity. The low productivity growth in peripheral EU countries was accompanied by a specific structural change pattern: there was a sharp production increase of non-tradables before the crisis relative to other EU countries. For most peripheral countries concerns about unfavourable sector structures remain, implying a continuation of unsustainable growth patterns. This has implications for the European Commission's macroeconomic imbalance procedures, since it allows identifying patterns of real divergence on a disaggregated level. Finally, we identify a link between sectoral growth asymmetries and the quality of domestic governance institutions. Especially differences in the legal system help to explain the observed productivity growth differentials.

Suggested Citation

  • Klaus S. Friesenbichler & Christian Glocker, 2018. "Tradability and Productivity Growth Differentials Across EU Member States," WIFO Working Papers 547, WIFO.
  • Handle: RePEc:wfo:wpaper:y:2017:i:547
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    File URL: https://www.wifo.ac.at/wwa/pubid/60841
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Tradability; Labour Productivity; Growth; Institutions; EU; Imbalance;

    JEL classification:

    • E1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models
    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment
    • E60 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - General
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

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