Structural Macroeconomic Change and the Size Pattern of by Fabrizio Trau

By Fabrizio Trau

The obstacle of the so-called Golden Age regime has been paralleled because the overdue '60s of the 20th century through and extending value of industry exchanges rather than vertically built-in production job, resulting in significant alterations within the dimension constitution of businesses. those adjustments have more often than not taken the shape of an employment shift in the direction of low-scale enterprises, reduce ordinary dimension and better variety of production devices. This booklet attempts to give an explanation for on theoretical grounds the explanations for such very important discontinuity.

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7 Self-employed as a share of total employment in manufacturing Source: OECD, Labour Force Statistics. over 20 percentage points in 1960, by the mid-1990s the gap between the different countries appears to have more than halved. This phenomenon is due, on the one hand, to the drop in the index in laggard industrialized countries (Japan and Italy, where it starts to increase again at the end of the 1970s) and on the other hand to its increase – more or less from the mid-1970s – in countries which developed their industrial system first (United Kingdom and United States).

32). Hence, “less internal integration is appropriate under conditions of high uncertainty, volatility, and frequent product modification. More internal integration is appropriate when industry conditions are less volatile and uncertain” (p. 33). On the whole, we can say that “each firm that integrates tries to control its need for certainty, but if competitive conditions and demand variability become too unfavourable for it to endure, the firm will face increasing pressure to dis-integrate, or to retreat to lesser forms of integration” (p.

4 It has often been claimed that the shift from the Golden Age to the more recent development stage of the industrial economies has been (more or less) strongly conditioned by a further (exogenous) factor acting on the supply side. According to this view, around the mid-1970s the introduction of microelectronics into the production processes of a growing number of manufacturing activities determined a fundamental change in the long-run cost curves of firms, opening the way to a gradual reduction of the minimum efficient (plant) size.

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