초록 close

Over the last two decades, labor market prospects of the low skilled in OECD-countries deteriorated sharply. Developments like these have been frequentlytraced back to low-cost competition from abroad. Yet, the Heckscher-Ohlinhypothesis is hard to reconcile with the fact that OECD-trade is for the most (andgrowing) part intraindustry trade (IT). IIT is usually regarded as much lessdisruptive as it is considered to affect the regional composition of product demand,but not necessarily labor demand. The paper proposes a model of trade-inducedtechnology choice in which, contrary to many beliefs, IIT generates substantialshifts in labor demand and employment. These changes are due to technologyimplementation being associated with spill-over effects related to businessservices and production fragmentation within and across firms. The model canaccount for a number of stylized facts of OECD-labor markets, including thebimodal growth of high and low-skilled services employment, and the recentconcentration of demand for skill in management and business-serviceoccupations, and is in line with statistics based on input-output tables suggestingthat production methods changed in tandem with exposure to foreign competition.JEL classification: F16, J23, J31, O33