Do Recessions Accelerate Routine-Biased Technological Change? Evidence from Vacancy Postings
We show that skill requirements in job vacancy postings differentially increased in MSAs that were hit hard by the Great Recession, relative to less hard-hit areas. These increases persist through at least the end of 2015 and are correlated with increases in capital investments, both at the MSA and firm-levels. We also find that effects are most pronounced in routine-cognitive occupations, which exhibit relative wage growth as well. We argue that this evidence is consistent with the restructuring of production toward routine-biased technologies and the more-skilled workers that complement them, and that the Great Recession accelerated this process.
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This paper was revised on September 13, 2017
Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w22762