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Author:Holmes, Thomas J. 

Discussion Paper
New manufacturing investment and unions

Despite recent media stories about both labor unions and the potential revitalization of U.S. manufacturing, most current policy discussions about improving business climate to foster manufacturing neglect the role of unions. This, plus the continued decline in U.S. union membership, might lead one to believe that unions matter little for new investment decisions. This essay argues that, in fact, unions remain an extremely significant factor in decisions by U.S. manufacturers about where they will or will not make new investments. Both unions and manufacturing are discussed in an analysis ...
Economic Policy Paper , Paper 13-2

Report
Patent data appendix for quid pro quo: Technology capital transfers for market access in China

Despite the recent rapid development and greater openness of China?s economy, FDI flows between China and technologically advanced countries are relatively small in both directions. We assess global capital flows in light of China?s quid pro quo policy of exchanging market access for transfers of technology capital?accumulated know-how such as research and development (R&D) that can be used in multiple production locations. We first provide empirical evidence of this policy and then incorporate it into a multicountry dynamic general equilibrium model. This extension leads to a significantly ...
Staff Report , Paper 488

Report
Quid pro quo: Technology capital transfers for market access in China

Despite the recent rapid development and greater openness of China?s economy, FDI flows between China and technologically advanced countries are relatively small in both directions. We assess global capital flows in light of China?s quid pro quo policy of exchanging market access for transfers of technology capital?accumulated know-how such as research and development (R&D) that can be used in multiple production locations. We first provide empirical evidence of this policy and then incorporate it into a multicountry dynamic general equilibrium model. This extension leads to a significantly ...
Staff Report , Paper 486

Report
Bar codes lead to frequent deliveries and superstores

This paper explores the consequences of new information technologies, such as bar codes and computer-tracking of inventories, for the optimal organization of retail. The first result is that there is a complementarity between the new information technology and frequent deliveries. This is consistent with the recent move in the retail sector toward higher-frequency delivery schedules. The second result is that adoption of the new technology tends to increase store size. This is consistent with recent increases in store size and the success of the superstore model of retail organization.
Staff Report , Paper 261

Discussion Paper
The Costs of Quid Pro Quo

To gain access to its markets, the Chinese government sometimes requires high-technology foreign firms to transfer partial property rights to their technology. Because the Chinese market is large and potentially lucrative, major multinationals typically agree to this quid pro quo policy, often through joint ventures with Chinese firms. We use a quantitative macroeconomic model to analyze the effects of this policy on firm investment incentives, Chinese technology goals, and overall international technology and investment flows. We find that: ?China has a very strong incentive to use the ...
Economic Policy Paper , Paper 15-1

Report
Competition and productivity: a review of evidence

Does competition spur productivity? And if so, how does it do so? These have long been regarded as central questions in economics. This essay reviews the literature that makes progress toward answering both questions.
Staff Report , Paper 439

Report
Resistance to technology and trade between areas

Why are methods of production used in an area when more 'efficient' methods are available? This paper explores a 'resistance to technology' explanation. In particular, the paper attempts to understand why some industries, like the construction industry, have had continued success in blocking new methods, while others have met failure, like the dairy industry's recent attempt to block bST. We develop a model which shows that how easily goods move between areas determines in part the extent of resistance to new methods in an area.
Staff Report , Paper 184

Report
Technical appendix for quid pro quo: Technology capital transfers for market access in China

Despite the recent rapid development and greater openness of China?s economy, FDI flows between China and technologically advanced countries are relatively small in both directions. We assess global capital flows in light of China?s quid pro quo policy of exchanging market access for transfers of technology capital?accumulated know-how such as research and development (R&D) that can be used in multiple production locations. We first provide empirical evidence of this policy and then incorporate it into a multicountry dynamic general equilibrium model. This extension leads to a significantly ...
Staff Report , Paper 487

Report
Step-by-step migration to efficient agglomerations

Recent literature suggests that historical accidents can trap economies in inefficient equilibria. In a prototype model in the literature, there are two locations, the productive South and the unproductive North. By accident of history, the industry starts in the North. Because of agglomeration economies, the industry may reside in the North forever, an inefficient outcome. This paper modifies the standard model by assuming there is a continuum of locations between the North and the South. Productivity gradually increases as one moves South. There is a unique long-run equilibrium in this ...
Staff Report , Paper 221

Working Paper
A theory of outsourcing and wage decline

We develop a theory of outsourcing in which there is market power in one factor market (labor) and no market power in a second factor market (capital). There are two intermediate goods: one labor-intensive and the other capital-intensive. We show there is always outsourcing in the market allocation when a friction limiting outsourcing is not too big. The key factor underlying the result is that labor demand is more elastic, the greater the labor share. Integrated plants pay higher wages than the specialist producers of labor-intensive intermediates. We derive conditions under which there are ...
Working Papers , Paper 669

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