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Chapter 25: Economic Growth
The Long-Term Significance of Growth
- Rapid growth of output is the distinguishing feature of modern times
- The central economic fact of the century
- Enables advanced industrial countries to provide more of everything
to their citizens
- Countries in economic decline often experience political and social
turmoil
THEORIES OF ECONOMIC GROWTH
Economic Growth
- Represents the expansion of a country’s potential GDP or national
output
- Occurs when a nation’s production possibility frontier shifts outward
- Output per person – rate at which the country’s living standards are
rising
- Growth in per capita – leads to rising average income
- Steady growth of output over this period
a. Growth in output per hour worked which moves closely with
the
- increase in living standards
- Annual growth rate of 2.3% over 136 years
- Output per person at the end was 22 times higher than at the
beginning
Economic Growth
- Involves the growth of potential output over the long run
Growth in output per capita – important objective since it is associated with
rising average real incomes and rising living standards
THE FOUR WHEELS OF GROWTH
1. Human Resources
a. Labor supply
b. Education
c. Skills
d. Discipline
e. Motivation
2. Natural resources
a. Land
b. Minerals
c. Fuels
d. Environment quality
3. Capital
a. Factories
b. Machinery
c. Roads
d. Intellectual property
4. Technological change and innovation
a. Science
b. Engineering
c. Management
d. Entrepreneurship
Aggregate Production Function
- Relates total national output to inputs and technology
Q = output
K = productive services of capital
L = labor inputs
R = natural-resource inputs
A = level of technology
F = production function
- As inputs of four wheels rise, we would expect that output would
increase
o Output will show diminishing returns to additional inputs of
production factors
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
- Productivity – denotes the ratio of output to a weighted average of
inputs
o As technology (A) improves, this allows a country to produce
more output with the same level of inputs
Human Resources
- Labor inputs – quantities of workers and of the skills of the workforce
- Quality of labor inputs is the most single important element in
economic growth
Natural Resources
- Possession of natural resources is not necessary for economic
success in the modern world
- Some thrive by concentrating on sectors that depend more on labor
and capital than on indigenous resources
Capital
- Includes tangible capital goods as well as intangible like patents,
trademarks, and computer software
- Accumulating capital requires a sacrifice of current consumption over
many years
- Low saving rates – result of low personal saving and large
government fiscal deficits
- Social over-head capital – investments necessary for efficient
functioning of the private sector that is undertaken only by
government
o Large-scale projects that precede trade and commerce
o Roads, irrigation, water projects, and public-health measures
o Indivisible or lumpy investments and sometimes have
increasing returns to scale
o Government must step in to ensure that these social-
overhead are effectively undertaken
- Network externalities – productivity depends upon the fraction of the
population which uses or which has access to this network
Technological Change and Innovation
- Typical S-shaped pattern in the diffusion of technologies
- Technological change – denotes changes in the processes of
production or introduction of new products or services
- Complex and multifaceted process, and no single formula for success
has been found
- Some approaches seem to kill the spirit of innovation
- Technological stagnation
o Heavy hand of state regulation
o Lack of profit motivation
o Inefficient pricing mechanism
o Widespread corruption
THEORIES OF ECONOMIC GROWTH
- Need to increase capital
- Stimulate research and development
- Technological change
- Better-educated workforce
The Classical Dynamics of Smith and Malthus
- Critical role of land in economic growth
- The original state of things, which preceeds both the appropriation of
land and the accumulation of stock (time when land was freely
available to all)
o People would simply spread out onto more acres as the
population increases
o No capital, national output would exactly double as population
doubles
o The entire national income would go to wages because there
is no subtraction for land rent or interest on capital
o Output expands in step with population so real wage per
worker is constant over time
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
- Population and national product grows but output grows slower
(diminishing returns)
- Increasing labor-land ratio leads to a declining marginal product of
labor and hence to declining real wage rates
T.R. Malthus
- Population pressures would drive the economy to a point where
workers were at the minimum level of subsistence
o Whenever wages were above subsistence level, population
would expand
o Below-subsistence wages will lead to high mortality and
population decline
- At subsistence = wages could there be a stable equilibrium of
population
- as population doubles, PPF shifts out by a factor of 2 in each direction
(no constraints on growth from land or resources)
- (b) Pessimistic Malthusian case – doubling of population leads to a
less than doubling of food and clothing which lowers per capita
output
Economic Growth with Capital Accumulation: The Neoclassical Growth
Model
- Malthus did not recognize that technological innovation and capital
investment could overcome the law of diminishing returns
o Land did not become the limiting factor in production
o Capital accumulation and new technologies became the
dominant forces affecting economic development
- Driving forces of economic growth in 21st Century
o Advances in computation
o Software
o Artificial intelligence
- Malthusian specter that may hunt countries which lead to social unrest
and economic decline
o Climate change
o Sea-level rise
o Drought-induced migrations
Neoclassical Model of Economic Growth
- Pioneered by Robert Solow of MIT
- Serves as the basic tool for understanding the growth process in
advanced countries
Basic Assumptions
- Describes an economy in which a single homogenous output is
produced by two types of inputs (capital and labor)
- Labor growth is assumed to be a given
- Assume that the economy is competitive and always operates in full
employment
- Major ingredients
o Capital
o Technological change
- Assume technology remains constant
- Capital
o Durable produced goods that are used to make other goods
- Capital goods
o Factories and houses, equipment, and inventories of finished
goods and goods in process
- Single kind of capital good denoted by K
- Measure aggregate stock of capital as the total quantity of capital
goods
o Approximate the universal capital good as the total dollar
value of capital goods as the total dollar value of capital
goods
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
- L be the number of workers
- K/L is the quantity of capital per worker or the capital-labor ratio
Aggregate Production Function for Neoclassical Growth Model
Capital deepening – process by which quantity of capital per worker
increases over time, when stock of capital grows more rapidly than labor force.
- A rapid rate of investment in plant and equipment tends to depress
the rate of return on capital
- Most worthwhile investment projects get undertaken first, after
which later investments become less and less valuable
- Rates of return on these later investments will be lower than the high
returns on the first likes between densely populated regions
- Wage paid to workers will rise because each worker has more capital
to work with and his marginal product therefore rises.
o Competitive wage rises along with the marginal product of
labor
Geometrical Analysis of the Neoclassical Model
- shows aggregate production function
- held constant for a moment are all other variables (4 wheels)
- as each worker has more capital to work with, economy moves up to
the right on the apf
- capital-labor ratio increases from (K/L)0 to (K/L)1, then amount of
output per worker also increases from (Q/L)0 to (Q/L)1
- rate of return on capital and real interest rate fall
- slope of the curve is the marginal product of capital which is seen to
fall as capital deepening occurs
Long-Run Steady State
- without technological change
- Eventually, the capital-labor ratio will stop rising
- In the long run, the economy will enter a steady state in which capital
deepening ceases
o Real wages stop growing
o Capital returns and real interest rates are constant
- Capital-labor ratio stops growing at V
o Q/L is constant at that point
- If economic growth consists only of accumulating capital through
replicating factories with existing methods of production, then
standard of living will eventually stop rising
The Central Role of Technological Change
- Model predicts that real wages will eventually stagnate if there is no
improvement in technology
o Real wages have definitely not stagnated over the last
century
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
o Real wages have grown by a factor of more than 8 over the
last century
o The model cannot explain the tremendous growth in
productivity over time nor the tremendous differences in per
capita income among countries
- Depict technological change as an upward shift in the aggregate
production function
- shows advances in productivity due to technological changes
- We must also take into account advances in technology
- Capital deepening + technological change is the arrow that will
indicate the increase in output per worker
o Economy enjoys rising output per worker, rising wages, and
increasing living standards
Impact of Changing Technologies on rates of profit and interest
- Real interest rate need not fall
- Invention increases the productivity of capital and offsets the tendency
for a falling rate of profit
Technological Change as an Economic Output
- New growth theory – seeks to uncover the processes by which
private market forces, public policy decisions, and alternative
- institutions lead to different patterns of technological change
- Technological change – output of the economic system
- Technologies – public or non-rival goods
o They can be used by many people at the same time without
being used up
- Inventions – expensive to produce but inexpensive to reproduce
- These features can result to market failures
o Inventors sometimes have great difficulty profiting from their
inventions because some people copy them
Role of Public Policy
- Governments generally support basic science through grants and
research facilities
- Governments must be careful to ensure that profit-oriented investors
have adequate incentives to engage in research and development
- Governments pay attention to intellectual property rights
o Patents and copy rights for adequate market rewards
New Growth Theory
- Changed the way we think about growth process and public policies
- Economic-growth policy should focus much more sharply on how
nations can improve their technological performance
THE PATTERS OF GROWTH IN THE UNITED STATES
The Facts of Economic Growth
- Trends in real GDP, capital stock, and population
- Stock of physical capital has risen by a factor of 14
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
- The amount of capital per worker (K/L ratio) has increased by a factor
of more than 4
- Shows importance of capital deepening
- Output curve is a not in between the two factor curves, but lies above
the curves
o Technological progress must have increased the productivity
of capital and labor
- Economy’s performance is measured by wages, salaries, and fringe
benefits
- Hourly earnings have grown impressively
- Expected from the growth in capital-labor ratio and from steady
technological advance
- Labor does not capture all fruits of productivity advance
o Labor has kept about the same share of total product
o Capital also earning about the same relative share throughout
the period
- Real wages have grown at about the same rate as output per worker
- Average growth rate of real wages was 1.8% per year while that of
output per worker was 2.2% a year
o Labor’s share of national income (and therefore also
property’s share) was near-constant over the last century
- Real interest rate – calculated as the interest rate on long-term
treasury securities corrected for inflation
- Rate of profit on capital is larger than risk free interest rate to reflect
risk and taxes
- Real interest rates and profit rates fluctuated greatly in business
cycles and wars with no displaying if strong upward or downward
trend over the whole period
o Technological change has largely offset diminishing returns
on capital
SEVEN TRENDS OF ECONOMIC GROWTH
1. Capital stock has grown more rapidly than population and
employment, resulting from capital deepening
2. For most of the period since 1900, there has been a strong upward
trend in real average hourly earnings
3. The share of labor compensation in national income has been
remarkably stable over the last century
4. There were major oscillations in real interest rates and the rate of
profit, particularly during business cycles but there has been no
strong upward or downward trend over the post-1900 period
5. Instead of steadily rising, which would be predicted by the law of
diminishing returns with unchanging technology, the capital-output
ratio has actually declined since the start of the 20th century
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
6. For the most period sine 1900, the ratios of national saving and
investment to GDP were stable. Since the national saving rate has
decline sharply in the 1980.
7. After effects of the business cycles are removed, national product has
grown at an average rate of 3.3% per year. Output growth has been
much higher than a weighted average of the growth of capital, labor,
and resource inputs. Technological innovation must be playing a key
role in economic growth
Relationship of the Seven Trends to Economic-Growth Theories
- Trends 1 and 2 – higher wage rates when capital deepens fit nicely to
the neoclassical growth model
- Trend 3 – wage share has been remarkably stable
o Interesting coincidence that is consistent with a wide variety
of production functions relating Q to L and K
- Trends 4 and 5 – show us that technological change must be playing
a role here
o A steady profit rate and a declining, or steady capital-
output ratio cannot hold if the K/L ratio rises in a world with
unchanging technology
o They contradict the basic law of diminishing returns under
deepening of capital
o We must recognize the key role of technological advance in
explaining the seven trends of modern economic growth
The Sources of Economic Growth
Accounting – first step in quantitative analysis of economic growth for any
country
The Growth-Accounting Approach
- Not a balance sheet or national product account
- It is a way of separating out the contributions of the different
ingredients driving observed growth trends
- Begins with aggregate production function Q = AF(K, L, R)
o Resources are omitted because land is constant
o We can express the growth of output in terms of growth of
the inputs plus the contribution of technological change
- Q can be composed in to the growth of:
o Labor (L) times its weight
o Capital (K) times its weight
o Technological change itself
- Ignore technological change for now
o Assumption of constant returns to scale means a 1%
growth in K will lead to a 1% growth in output
o But suppose L grows at 1% and K at 5%
 Do not get the average since these two factors do
not necessarily contribute equally to output
o ¾ of national income goes to labor suggests that labor growth
will contribute more to output than will capital growth
- If labor’s growth rate gets 3 times the weight of capital’s growth,
answer can be calculated by:
o ¾ of 1% + ¼ of 5% = 2%
o Q will grow at 2% per year
o We add technological change and thereby obtain all sources
of growth
Fundamental Equation of Growth Accounting
- These fractions would be replaced by new fractions if relative shares
of factors were to change or if other factors are added
Per Capita Growth
- We can eliminate L as a separate growth source
- How capital deepening would affect per capita output if technological
advance were zero
- Output per worker would grow only ¼ as fast as capital per worker
reflecting diminishing returns
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
Computing Technological Change
- We must infer TC as the residual or leftover after the other
components of output and inputs are calculated
- What part of per capita output is due to capital deepening and to
technological advance
Numerical Example
- Hours work have grown 1.4% per year
- K has grown 2.6% per year
- Q has grown 3.3 % per year
- 1.9% increase in output per hour worked
o 0.3 is due to capital deepening
o 1.6 per year stems from technological change
Detailed Studies
- output (measured as gross output of the private business sector) grew
at an average rate of 3.5%
- Input growth (capital, land, and labor) contributed 2.1% points per
year
- Total factor productivity – growth of output less the growth of the
weighted sum of all inputs, or what we have called technological
change – averaged 1.4% annually
- 60% of the growth can be accounted for by the growth in labor and
capital
- Remaining 40% is a residual factor can be attributed to education,
research development, innovation, economies of scale, advances
in knowledge, and other factors.
- When corruptions deepen, productivity actually declines as the
central planning apparatus becomes more dysfunctional, incentives
were also worsened
o Only the ability of the central government to divert output into
investment (and away from consumption) offset the system’s
inefficiency
RECENT TRENDS IN PRODUCTIVITY
- There are sharp movements from year to year as well as long swings
- Productivity grew briskly from World War II until the late 1960s
- 1973 – there were several years of poor performance, and even
decline
o Sharp increases of oil prices
o Increasing stringency of regulations
o Impact of price and wage controls
o Pervasive regulation of the energy industries
o Slow-down in research and development spending
Chapter 25: Economic Growth
- Growth in real wages track productivity per hour worked
- If labor’s share of national income is constant, this implies that real
wages will grow at the rate of growth of labor productivity
The Productivity Rebound
- Innovations in information technology (computer hardware, software,
and communications) have produced astonishing improvements in
every corner of the economy
- Prices of computers fell
- Computers are like a new fourth factor of production
- Real compensation moves parallel with labor productivity
Facts about Productivity Rebound
1. Productivity explosion in computers
o Comes with consequent price decline
o Growth of productivity from this sector has been 20 to 30
percent per year
2. Capital Deepening
o Very sharp increases in investment
o Companies invested heavily in computers and software to
take advantage of their falling prices and the increasing
power of new software
3. Unmeasured outputs
o Many advances have not been captured by productivity
statistics
o Phenomenal advances of internet are largely missed in the
productivity statistics
o Productivity is significantly underestimated for software and
communications equipment
 Also the time saved from shopping on the internet,
postage saved from e-mails, and conveniences of
cellular phones
 True gains from computers lie in the future
 It will take decades for the economy to real the full
benefits of fundamental inventions

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Chapter 25: Economic Growth Summary from Samuelson and Nordhaus

  • 1. Chapter 25: Economic Growth The Long-Term Significance of Growth - Rapid growth of output is the distinguishing feature of modern times - The central economic fact of the century - Enables advanced industrial countries to provide more of everything to their citizens - Countries in economic decline often experience political and social turmoil THEORIES OF ECONOMIC GROWTH Economic Growth - Represents the expansion of a country’s potential GDP or national output - Occurs when a nation’s production possibility frontier shifts outward - Output per person – rate at which the country’s living standards are rising - Growth in per capita – leads to rising average income - Steady growth of output over this period a. Growth in output per hour worked which moves closely with the - increase in living standards - Annual growth rate of 2.3% over 136 years - Output per person at the end was 22 times higher than at the beginning Economic Growth - Involves the growth of potential output over the long run Growth in output per capita – important objective since it is associated with rising average real incomes and rising living standards THE FOUR WHEELS OF GROWTH 1. Human Resources a. Labor supply b. Education c. Skills d. Discipline e. Motivation 2. Natural resources a. Land b. Minerals c. Fuels d. Environment quality 3. Capital a. Factories b. Machinery c. Roads d. Intellectual property 4. Technological change and innovation a. Science b. Engineering c. Management d. Entrepreneurship Aggregate Production Function - Relates total national output to inputs and technology Q = output K = productive services of capital L = labor inputs R = natural-resource inputs A = level of technology F = production function - As inputs of four wheels rise, we would expect that output would increase o Output will show diminishing returns to additional inputs of production factors
  • 2. Chapter 25: Economic Growth - Productivity – denotes the ratio of output to a weighted average of inputs o As technology (A) improves, this allows a country to produce more output with the same level of inputs Human Resources - Labor inputs – quantities of workers and of the skills of the workforce - Quality of labor inputs is the most single important element in economic growth Natural Resources - Possession of natural resources is not necessary for economic success in the modern world - Some thrive by concentrating on sectors that depend more on labor and capital than on indigenous resources Capital - Includes tangible capital goods as well as intangible like patents, trademarks, and computer software - Accumulating capital requires a sacrifice of current consumption over many years - Low saving rates – result of low personal saving and large government fiscal deficits - Social over-head capital – investments necessary for efficient functioning of the private sector that is undertaken only by government o Large-scale projects that precede trade and commerce o Roads, irrigation, water projects, and public-health measures o Indivisible or lumpy investments and sometimes have increasing returns to scale o Government must step in to ensure that these social- overhead are effectively undertaken - Network externalities – productivity depends upon the fraction of the population which uses or which has access to this network Technological Change and Innovation - Typical S-shaped pattern in the diffusion of technologies - Technological change – denotes changes in the processes of production or introduction of new products or services - Complex and multifaceted process, and no single formula for success has been found - Some approaches seem to kill the spirit of innovation - Technological stagnation o Heavy hand of state regulation o Lack of profit motivation o Inefficient pricing mechanism o Widespread corruption THEORIES OF ECONOMIC GROWTH - Need to increase capital - Stimulate research and development - Technological change - Better-educated workforce The Classical Dynamics of Smith and Malthus - Critical role of land in economic growth - The original state of things, which preceeds both the appropriation of land and the accumulation of stock (time when land was freely available to all) o People would simply spread out onto more acres as the population increases o No capital, national output would exactly double as population doubles o The entire national income would go to wages because there is no subtraction for land rent or interest on capital o Output expands in step with population so real wage per worker is constant over time
  • 3. Chapter 25: Economic Growth - Population and national product grows but output grows slower (diminishing returns) - Increasing labor-land ratio leads to a declining marginal product of labor and hence to declining real wage rates T.R. Malthus - Population pressures would drive the economy to a point where workers were at the minimum level of subsistence o Whenever wages were above subsistence level, population would expand o Below-subsistence wages will lead to high mortality and population decline - At subsistence = wages could there be a stable equilibrium of population - as population doubles, PPF shifts out by a factor of 2 in each direction (no constraints on growth from land or resources) - (b) Pessimistic Malthusian case – doubling of population leads to a less than doubling of food and clothing which lowers per capita output Economic Growth with Capital Accumulation: The Neoclassical Growth Model - Malthus did not recognize that technological innovation and capital investment could overcome the law of diminishing returns o Land did not become the limiting factor in production o Capital accumulation and new technologies became the dominant forces affecting economic development - Driving forces of economic growth in 21st Century o Advances in computation o Software o Artificial intelligence - Malthusian specter that may hunt countries which lead to social unrest and economic decline o Climate change o Sea-level rise o Drought-induced migrations Neoclassical Model of Economic Growth - Pioneered by Robert Solow of MIT - Serves as the basic tool for understanding the growth process in advanced countries Basic Assumptions - Describes an economy in which a single homogenous output is produced by two types of inputs (capital and labor) - Labor growth is assumed to be a given - Assume that the economy is competitive and always operates in full employment - Major ingredients o Capital o Technological change - Assume technology remains constant - Capital o Durable produced goods that are used to make other goods - Capital goods o Factories and houses, equipment, and inventories of finished goods and goods in process - Single kind of capital good denoted by K - Measure aggregate stock of capital as the total quantity of capital goods o Approximate the universal capital good as the total dollar value of capital goods as the total dollar value of capital goods
  • 4. Chapter 25: Economic Growth - L be the number of workers - K/L is the quantity of capital per worker or the capital-labor ratio Aggregate Production Function for Neoclassical Growth Model Capital deepening – process by which quantity of capital per worker increases over time, when stock of capital grows more rapidly than labor force. - A rapid rate of investment in plant and equipment tends to depress the rate of return on capital - Most worthwhile investment projects get undertaken first, after which later investments become less and less valuable - Rates of return on these later investments will be lower than the high returns on the first likes between densely populated regions - Wage paid to workers will rise because each worker has more capital to work with and his marginal product therefore rises. o Competitive wage rises along with the marginal product of labor Geometrical Analysis of the Neoclassical Model - shows aggregate production function - held constant for a moment are all other variables (4 wheels) - as each worker has more capital to work with, economy moves up to the right on the apf - capital-labor ratio increases from (K/L)0 to (K/L)1, then amount of output per worker also increases from (Q/L)0 to (Q/L)1 - rate of return on capital and real interest rate fall - slope of the curve is the marginal product of capital which is seen to fall as capital deepening occurs Long-Run Steady State - without technological change - Eventually, the capital-labor ratio will stop rising - In the long run, the economy will enter a steady state in which capital deepening ceases o Real wages stop growing o Capital returns and real interest rates are constant - Capital-labor ratio stops growing at V o Q/L is constant at that point - If economic growth consists only of accumulating capital through replicating factories with existing methods of production, then standard of living will eventually stop rising The Central Role of Technological Change - Model predicts that real wages will eventually stagnate if there is no improvement in technology o Real wages have definitely not stagnated over the last century
  • 5. Chapter 25: Economic Growth o Real wages have grown by a factor of more than 8 over the last century o The model cannot explain the tremendous growth in productivity over time nor the tremendous differences in per capita income among countries - Depict technological change as an upward shift in the aggregate production function - shows advances in productivity due to technological changes - We must also take into account advances in technology - Capital deepening + technological change is the arrow that will indicate the increase in output per worker o Economy enjoys rising output per worker, rising wages, and increasing living standards Impact of Changing Technologies on rates of profit and interest - Real interest rate need not fall - Invention increases the productivity of capital and offsets the tendency for a falling rate of profit Technological Change as an Economic Output - New growth theory – seeks to uncover the processes by which private market forces, public policy decisions, and alternative - institutions lead to different patterns of technological change - Technological change – output of the economic system - Technologies – public or non-rival goods o They can be used by many people at the same time without being used up - Inventions – expensive to produce but inexpensive to reproduce - These features can result to market failures o Inventors sometimes have great difficulty profiting from their inventions because some people copy them Role of Public Policy - Governments generally support basic science through grants and research facilities - Governments must be careful to ensure that profit-oriented investors have adequate incentives to engage in research and development - Governments pay attention to intellectual property rights o Patents and copy rights for adequate market rewards New Growth Theory - Changed the way we think about growth process and public policies - Economic-growth policy should focus much more sharply on how nations can improve their technological performance THE PATTERS OF GROWTH IN THE UNITED STATES The Facts of Economic Growth - Trends in real GDP, capital stock, and population - Stock of physical capital has risen by a factor of 14
  • 6. Chapter 25: Economic Growth - The amount of capital per worker (K/L ratio) has increased by a factor of more than 4 - Shows importance of capital deepening - Output curve is a not in between the two factor curves, but lies above the curves o Technological progress must have increased the productivity of capital and labor - Economy’s performance is measured by wages, salaries, and fringe benefits - Hourly earnings have grown impressively - Expected from the growth in capital-labor ratio and from steady technological advance - Labor does not capture all fruits of productivity advance o Labor has kept about the same share of total product o Capital also earning about the same relative share throughout the period - Real wages have grown at about the same rate as output per worker - Average growth rate of real wages was 1.8% per year while that of output per worker was 2.2% a year o Labor’s share of national income (and therefore also property’s share) was near-constant over the last century - Real interest rate – calculated as the interest rate on long-term treasury securities corrected for inflation - Rate of profit on capital is larger than risk free interest rate to reflect risk and taxes - Real interest rates and profit rates fluctuated greatly in business cycles and wars with no displaying if strong upward or downward trend over the whole period o Technological change has largely offset diminishing returns on capital SEVEN TRENDS OF ECONOMIC GROWTH 1. Capital stock has grown more rapidly than population and employment, resulting from capital deepening 2. For most of the period since 1900, there has been a strong upward trend in real average hourly earnings 3. The share of labor compensation in national income has been remarkably stable over the last century 4. There were major oscillations in real interest rates and the rate of profit, particularly during business cycles but there has been no strong upward or downward trend over the post-1900 period 5. Instead of steadily rising, which would be predicted by the law of diminishing returns with unchanging technology, the capital-output ratio has actually declined since the start of the 20th century
  • 7. Chapter 25: Economic Growth 6. For the most period sine 1900, the ratios of national saving and investment to GDP were stable. Since the national saving rate has decline sharply in the 1980. 7. After effects of the business cycles are removed, national product has grown at an average rate of 3.3% per year. Output growth has been much higher than a weighted average of the growth of capital, labor, and resource inputs. Technological innovation must be playing a key role in economic growth Relationship of the Seven Trends to Economic-Growth Theories - Trends 1 and 2 – higher wage rates when capital deepens fit nicely to the neoclassical growth model - Trend 3 – wage share has been remarkably stable o Interesting coincidence that is consistent with a wide variety of production functions relating Q to L and K - Trends 4 and 5 – show us that technological change must be playing a role here o A steady profit rate and a declining, or steady capital- output ratio cannot hold if the K/L ratio rises in a world with unchanging technology o They contradict the basic law of diminishing returns under deepening of capital o We must recognize the key role of technological advance in explaining the seven trends of modern economic growth The Sources of Economic Growth Accounting – first step in quantitative analysis of economic growth for any country The Growth-Accounting Approach - Not a balance sheet or national product account - It is a way of separating out the contributions of the different ingredients driving observed growth trends - Begins with aggregate production function Q = AF(K, L, R) o Resources are omitted because land is constant o We can express the growth of output in terms of growth of the inputs plus the contribution of technological change - Q can be composed in to the growth of: o Labor (L) times its weight o Capital (K) times its weight o Technological change itself - Ignore technological change for now o Assumption of constant returns to scale means a 1% growth in K will lead to a 1% growth in output o But suppose L grows at 1% and K at 5%  Do not get the average since these two factors do not necessarily contribute equally to output o ¾ of national income goes to labor suggests that labor growth will contribute more to output than will capital growth - If labor’s growth rate gets 3 times the weight of capital’s growth, answer can be calculated by: o ¾ of 1% + ¼ of 5% = 2% o Q will grow at 2% per year o We add technological change and thereby obtain all sources of growth Fundamental Equation of Growth Accounting - These fractions would be replaced by new fractions if relative shares of factors were to change or if other factors are added Per Capita Growth - We can eliminate L as a separate growth source - How capital deepening would affect per capita output if technological advance were zero - Output per worker would grow only ¼ as fast as capital per worker reflecting diminishing returns
  • 8. Chapter 25: Economic Growth Computing Technological Change - We must infer TC as the residual or leftover after the other components of output and inputs are calculated - What part of per capita output is due to capital deepening and to technological advance Numerical Example - Hours work have grown 1.4% per year - K has grown 2.6% per year - Q has grown 3.3 % per year - 1.9% increase in output per hour worked o 0.3 is due to capital deepening o 1.6 per year stems from technological change Detailed Studies - output (measured as gross output of the private business sector) grew at an average rate of 3.5% - Input growth (capital, land, and labor) contributed 2.1% points per year - Total factor productivity – growth of output less the growth of the weighted sum of all inputs, or what we have called technological change – averaged 1.4% annually - 60% of the growth can be accounted for by the growth in labor and capital - Remaining 40% is a residual factor can be attributed to education, research development, innovation, economies of scale, advances in knowledge, and other factors. - When corruptions deepen, productivity actually declines as the central planning apparatus becomes more dysfunctional, incentives were also worsened o Only the ability of the central government to divert output into investment (and away from consumption) offset the system’s inefficiency RECENT TRENDS IN PRODUCTIVITY - There are sharp movements from year to year as well as long swings - Productivity grew briskly from World War II until the late 1960s - 1973 – there were several years of poor performance, and even decline o Sharp increases of oil prices o Increasing stringency of regulations o Impact of price and wage controls o Pervasive regulation of the energy industries o Slow-down in research and development spending
  • 9. Chapter 25: Economic Growth - Growth in real wages track productivity per hour worked - If labor’s share of national income is constant, this implies that real wages will grow at the rate of growth of labor productivity The Productivity Rebound - Innovations in information technology (computer hardware, software, and communications) have produced astonishing improvements in every corner of the economy - Prices of computers fell - Computers are like a new fourth factor of production - Real compensation moves parallel with labor productivity Facts about Productivity Rebound 1. Productivity explosion in computers o Comes with consequent price decline o Growth of productivity from this sector has been 20 to 30 percent per year 2. Capital Deepening o Very sharp increases in investment o Companies invested heavily in computers and software to take advantage of their falling prices and the increasing power of new software 3. Unmeasured outputs o Many advances have not been captured by productivity statistics o Phenomenal advances of internet are largely missed in the productivity statistics o Productivity is significantly underestimated for software and communications equipment  Also the time saved from shopping on the internet, postage saved from e-mails, and conveniences of cellular phones  True gains from computers lie in the future  It will take decades for the economy to real the full benefits of fundamental inventions