James Feyrer

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This paper examines the relationship between workforce demographics and aggregate productivity. Changes in the age structure of the workforce is found to be significantly correlated with changes in aggregate productivity. Different demographic structures may be related to almost one quarter of the persistent productivity gap between the OECD and low income(More)
Establishing a robust causal relationship between trade and income has been difficult. Frankel and Romer (1999) use geographic instruments to identify a positive effect of trade on income. Rodriguez and Rodrik (2000) show that these results are not robust to controlling for missing variables such as distance to the equator or institutions. This paper solves(More)
Only a few rich nations are currently at replacement levels of fertility and many are considerably below. We believe that changes in the status of women are driving fertility change. At low levels of female status, women specialize in household production and fertility is high. In an intermediate phase, women have increasing opportunities to earn a living(More)
We use state and county level variation to examine the impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act on employment. A cross state analysis suggests that one additional job was created by each $107,000 in stimulus spending. Time series analysis at the state level suggests a smaller response with a per job cost of about $400,000. These results imply(More)
This paper studies growth and inequality in China and India—two economies that account for a third of the world’s population. By modelling growth and inequality as components in a joint stochastic process, the paper calibrates the impact each has on different welfare indicators and on the personal income distribution across the joint population of the two(More)
This paper investigates the empirical validity of different classes of ‘development trap’ models of economic growth. Quah (1993) finds that the cross country distribution of per capita income is moving toward a twin peaked distribution. This finding has supported and encouraged a large theoretical literature on development traps that produce twin peaks(More)
Iodine deficiency is the leading cause of preventable mental retardation in the world today. Iodine deficiency was common in the developed world until the introduction of iodized salt in the 1920’s. The incidence of iodine deficiency is connected to low iodine levels in the soil and water. We examine the impact of salt iodization in the US by taking(More)
Legal origin cannot explain economic growth. Although common law countries have experienced higher growth rates since 1960, this advantage disappears when one controls for the dominant pre-independence colonial power or for human capital in 1960. Legal origin and colonial history are strongly correlated. Nearly all common law countries are former English(More)