Creator: He, Hui and Liu, Zheng Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 644 Abstract:
Wage inequality between education groups in the United States has increased substantially since the early 1980s. The relative number of college-educated workers has also increased dramatically in the postwar period. This paper presents a unified framework where the dynamics of both skill accumulation and wage inequality arise as an equilibrium outcome driven by measured investment-specific technological change. Working through equipment-skill complementarity and endogenous skill accumulation, the model does well in capturing the steady growth in the relative quantity of skilled labor during the postwar period and the substantial rise in wage inequality after the early 1980s. Based on the calibrated model, we examine the quantitative effects of some hypothetical tax-policy reforms on skill accumulation, wage inequality, and welfare.
关键词: Skill premium, Capital-skill complementarity, Investment-specific technological change, and Skill accumulation 学科: O33 - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes, E25 - Aggregate Factor Income Distribution, J31 - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials, and J24 - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
Creator: Krusell, Per, Ohanian, Lee E., Ríos-Rull, José-Víctor, and Violante, Giovanni L. Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 239 Abstract:
The notion of skilled-biased technological change is often held responsible for the recent behavior of the U.S. skill premium, or the ratio between the wages of skilled and unskilled labor. This paper develops a framework for understanding this notion in terms of observable variables and uses the framework to evaluate the fraction of the skill premium's variation that is caused by changes in observables. A version of the neoclassical growth model is used in which the key feature of aggregate technology is capital-skill complementarity: the elasticity of substitution is higher between capital equipment and unskilled labor than between capital equipment and skilled labor. With this feature, changes in observables can account for nearly all the variation in the skill premium over the last 30 years. This finding suggests that increased wage inequality results from economic growth driven by new, efficient technologies embodied in capital equipment.
关键词: Capital-skill complementarity, Wage inequality, and Technological change