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The effect of labor market monopsony on economic growth

Tavis Barr and Udayan Roy ()

Journal of Macroeconomics, 2008, vol. 30, issue 4, 1446-1467

Abstract: In this endogenous growth model, a minimum efficient scale of production and workers' home-to-work travel costs combine to give firms monopsony power, and this monopsony power leads to slower growth. Monopsony drives the wage below the marginal product of labor. This lower wage leads to lower investment in human capital and thereby to a lower growth rate. This makes investment in human capital - and therefore the growth rate - suboptimal. We provide evidence from a cross-country panel to support our model: Urbanization, which we assume is determined by a country's exogenous population density and cropland area, positively impacts the wage share of output; the wage share positively impacts educational attainment; higher-income countries have higher wage shares; and within-country upticks in the wage share have a positive lagged effect on the growth rate.

Keywords: O57; J42; L13; Economic; growth; Human; capital; Monopsony; Wage; share (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2008
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