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Concentrating on the Fall of the Labor Share

David Autor (), David Dorn (), Lawrence Katz (), Christina Patterson () and John van Reenen ()
Additional contact information
Christina Patterson: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

No 10539, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: The recent fall of labor's share of GDP in numerous countries is well-documented, but its causes are poorly understood. We sketch a "superstar firm" model where industries are increasingly characterized by "winner take most" competition, leading a small number of highly profitable (and low labor share) firms to command growing market share. Building on Autor et al. (2017), we evaluate and confirm two core claims of the superstar firm hypothesis: the concentration of sales among firms within industries has risen across much of the private sector; and industries with larger increases in concentration exhibit a larger decline in labor's share.

Keywords: labor share; sales concentration (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E24 J31 L11 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-mac
Date: 2017-01
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Published in: American Economic Review, Papers & Proceedings, 2017, 107(5), 180-185

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Journal Article: Concentrating on the Fall of the Labor Share (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Concentrating on the Fall of the Labor Share (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Concentrating on the Fall of the Labor Share (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Concentrating on the Fall of the Labor Share (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Concentrating on the fall of the labor share (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Concentrating on the Fall of the Labor Share (2017) Downloads
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