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Maquiladoras and Standard of Living in Mexico Before and After NAFTA

  • Julio Huato

    (City University of New York - Graduate Center - Economics Department)

This study assesses the impact across states of for-export, mostly foreign-owned manufacturing plants (commonly known as 'maquiladoras') on various measures of standard of living in Mexico, namely literacy rate, school attendance rates, housing characteristics, life expectancy, infant mortality, and an overall index of human development. The main data set used is from the population and housing censuses of 1980, 1990, and 2000. The study controls for the effect of nonmaquiladora economic activity and prior growth. To remove the endogeneity, maquiladora activity is instrumented with a measure of road transportation time to the nearest major border city in the United States. The resulting IV-TS- OLS and GLS regressions, pooled and with (state and time) fixed effects, are estimated and the results of the respective Hausman specification tests are reported. I conclude that, overall, with the inclusion of state and time effects, maquiladora activity shows no impact on the measures of standard of living analyzed, with one exception: undergraduate schooling rates.

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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Development and Comp Systems with number 0508006.

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Length: 56 pages
Date of creation: 17 Aug 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpdc:0508006
Note: Type of Document - zip; pages: 56. The appendix tables have many blank pages in between. Scroll down to see them all. I apologize for the inconvenience.
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  1. Alarcon, Diana & Zepeda, Eduardo, 1998. "Employment trends in the Mexican manufacturing sector," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 125-145, December.
  2. William C. Gruben, 2001. "Was NAFTA behind Mexico's high maquiladora growth?," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Q III, pages 11-21.
  3. Blomstrom, Magnus & Persson, Hakan, 1983. "Foreign investment and spillover efficiency in an underdeveloped economy: Evidence from the Mexican manufacturing industry," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 11(6), pages 493-501, June.
  4. Feenstra, Robert C & Hanson, Gordon H, 1996. "Globalization, Outsourcing, and Wage Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 240-45, May.
  5. Grossman, G.M & Krueger, A.B., 1991. "Environmental Impacts of a North American Free Trade Agreement," Papers 158, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
  6. Gordon H. Hanson & Ann Harrison, 1999. "Trade Liberalization and Wage Inequality in Mexico," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(2), pages 271-288, January.
  7. Drusilla K. Brown & Alan V. Deardorff & Robert M. Stern, 1992. "A North American Free Trade Agreement: Analytical Issues and a Computational Assessment," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 11-30, 01.
  8. Cesar Patricio Bouillon & Arianna Legovini & Nora Lustig, 2003. "Rising Inequality in Mexico: Household Characteristics and Regional Effects," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(4), pages 112-133.
  9. Krueger, Anne O., 1995. "Policy lessons from development experience since the Second World War," Handbook of Development Economics, in: Hollis Chenery & T.N. Srinivasan (ed.), Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 40, pages 2497-2550 Elsevier.
  10. Hausman, Jerry A, 1978. "Specification Tests in Econometrics," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(6), pages 1251-71, November.
  11. Airola, Jim & Juhn, Chinhui, 2005. "Wage Inequality in Post-Reform Mexico," IZA Discussion Papers 1525, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Jere R. Behrman & Nancy Birdsall & Miguel Székely, 2001. "Pobreza, Desigualdad, y Liberalización Comercial y financiera en América Latina," Research Department Publications 4262, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  13. Ramirez, Miguel D., 2003. "Mexico under NAFTA: a critical assessment," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 43(5), pages 863-892.
  14. Brian Aitken & Ann Harrison & Robert E. Lipsey, 1995. "Wages and Foreign Ownership: A Comparative Study of Mexico, Venezuela and the United States," NBER Working Papers 5102, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Magnus Blomstrom & Edward N. Wolff, 1989. "Multinational Corporations and Productivity Convergence in Mexico," NBER Working Papers 3141, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Cragg, Michael Ian & Epelbaum, Mario, 1996. "Why has wage dispersion grown in Mexico? Is it the incidence of reforms or the growing demand for skills?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 99-116, October.
  17. Revenga, Ana, 1997. "Employment and Wage Effects of Trade Liberalization: The Case of Mexican Manufacturing," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(3), pages S20-43, July.
  18. Gordon H. Hanson, 2003. "What Has Happened to Wages in Mexico since NAFTA?," NBER Working Papers 9563, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Buitelaar, Rudolf M. & Perez, Ramon Padilla, 2000. "Maquila, Economic Reform and Corporate Strategies," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(9), pages 1627-1642, September.
  20. Zadia M. Feliciano, 2001. "Workers and Trade Liberalization: The Impact of Trade Reforms in Mexico on Wages and Employment," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 55(1), pages 95-115, October.
  21. William Easterly & Norbert Fiess & Daniel Lederman, 2003. "NAFTA and Convergence in North America: High Expectations, Big Events, Little Time," ECONOMIA JOURNAL OF THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION, ECONOMIA JOURNAL OF THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION.
  22. Timothy J. Kehoe, 1992. "Modeling the dynamic impact of North American free trade," Working Papers 491, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  23. Leslie Young & Jose Romero, 1991. "A dynamic dual model of the Free Trade Agreement," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, pages 25-37.
  24. Esquivel, Gerardo & Rodriguez-Lopez, Jose Antonio, 2003. "Technology, trade, and wage inequality in Mexico before and after NAFTA," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 543-565, December.
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