China’s Labour Market Conundrum C.P. Chandrasekhar and Jayati Ghosh

Has China's labour market reached a point where long years of high growth have led to demand outstripping supply, resulting in a sharp rise in wages? China_Labour (Download the full text in PDF format) (This article was originally published in the Business Line on July 4, 2017.)

Globalization and the Impasse of Capitalism Prabhat Patnaik

I feel greatly honoured that I have been asked to deliver the Harold Wolpe memorial lecture for the year 2016. Harold Wolpe was an outstanding thinker who combined political activism for the liberation of the South African people with deep insights into the economic basis of apartheid. I am indeed grateful for this opportunity to pay my tribute to this remarkable person who in my view constitutes a role model for anyone aspiring to be a social scientist. Since a good deal of Harold Wolpe’s theoretical work was concerned with the value of labour power, and hence by implication with…

Labour Market Regulations and Economic Outcomes: Some capital lessons and minor messages Praveen Jha, Sakti Golder and Swayamsiddha Panda

This paper provides a survey of the empirical evidence on the relationship between labour market institutions and economic outcomes. Survey of major cross-country empirical constructs that examine linkages between labour regulations and different aspects of economic performance such as employment, growth, etc., shows that the empirical basis for the advocacy of blanket labour market flexibility is rather weak. The paper also highlights some key empirical findings from the organised manufacturing sector in India and postulates some capital lessons and minor messages that emerge from such an exercise. Labour_Market (Download the full text in PDF format)

Technology and Employment in an Open Underdeveloped Economy Prabhat Patnaik

[Working Paper No. 01/2006] The process of trade and financial liberalisation under a capitalist economy, which links the pace of technological and structural change to that of the advanced capitalist world, must necessarily lead to increase in unemployment, a constant wage rate at subsistence and increase in absolute poverty for a larger section of the work force. This trend is further strengthened by the demand pattern of the classes whose income shares increase in this scenario. A socialist economy, in comparison, can opt for an alternative trajectory of development through control over the pace of technological change, brought about through…

Is More Mobility Good? Firm Mobility and the Low Wage – Low productivity trap Stephanie Seguino

This paper explores the possibility that unregulated FDI flows are causally implicated in the decline in labor productivity growth in semi-industrialized economies. These effects are hypothesized to operate through the negative impact of firm mobility on worker bargaining power and thus affecting wages. Downward pressure on wages can reduce the pressure on firms to raise productivity in defense of profits, contributing to a low wage-low productivity trap. The paper presents empirical evidence based on panel data fixed effects and GMM estimation for 37 semi-industrialized economies, which supports the causal link between increased firm mobility and lower wages, as well as…

NAFTA and the Mexican Economy: A look back on a ten-year relationship Juan Carlos Moreno-Brid, Pablo Ruiz Napoles and Juan Carlos Rivas Valdivia

In a critical review of the impact of NAFTA on the Mexican economy, the authors argue that NAFTA has resulted in a reduction of Mexico’s potential long-term economic growth and a widening gulf between the “haves” and the “have-nots.” nafta_mexican_economy (Download the full text in PDF format)