Carl Davidson og Steven J. Matusz
W.E. Upjohn Institute 2004 145 s. ISBN 0-88099-274-3
Bogomtale fra forlaget.
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760 International Trade and Labor Markets Theory, Evidence, and Policy Implications W.E. Uphohn Institute 2004, 143 s. ISBN 0-88099-273-5 -1 2004 0 0 0 20 -1 "
During the past two decades, the economic fortunes of less-skilled workers in
the United States and Europe have sunk at a time when there has been a boom in
international trade. This has sparked considerable debate among those interested
in trade policy and labor markets over the impact of trade on labor-market
outcomes, and in particular, the impact of globalization on low-skill, low-wage
Davidson and Matusz tackle these questions by extending the traditional
analysis of international trade to allow for labor markets characterized by
workers whose labor-market experiences are punctuated by spells of involuntary
unemployment. They demonstrate that such extensions are easily accomplished and
that they provide valuable new insights that withstand empirical scrutiny. And
perhaps most importantly, argue Davidson and Matusz, such models offer the
appropriate venue in which to carry out policy analysis aimed at determining the
best way to compensate those who suffer economic loss as a result of changing
Two views on the impacts of trade liberalization on labor markets prevail.
Free trade proponents argue that by expanding our export markets we make it
easier for the unemployed to return to work sooner. Those opposing freer trade
worry about workers who lose their jobs as imports flow into the United States,
or they see the wages of the low-skilled workers eroded as employers have
difficulty competing with foreign competitors using workers paid third-world
wages. In addition, say the authors, academic economists seem unconcerned about
the jobs created or destroyed by changes in trade policy. In fact, debate about
trade policy among economists usually ignores the impact of trade on employment.
Instead, they typically argue that fully flexible wages and other factor prices
allow the economy to maintain full employment of all resources, including labor.
In response, Davidson and Matusz develop simple yet compelling models that
allow for documented differences in labor markets across countries in order to
investigate the impact of trade and trade policies on society's underclass.
These are based on several micro-based models of unemployment that have emerged
over the past 30 years, and they allow the authors to account for differing
degrees of labor-market flexibility. The models allow examination of the impact
on the poor of trade's effects on job opportunities and on the distribution of
income when unemployment is present.
The same models are then used to study the relative merits of policies such
as trade adjustment assistance, wage subsidies for dislocated workers, job
training subsidies, and other policies aimed at helping workers displaced by
changes in the pattern of trade.