NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
Romualdo A. Roldan
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NBER Working Papers and Publications
|October 1978||Do Multinational Firms Adapt Factor Proportions To Relative Factor Prices?|
with Robert E. Lipsey, Irving B. Kravis: w0293
It has been alleged that multinational firms fail to adapt their methods of production to take advantage of the abundance and low price of labor in less developed countries and therefore contribute to the unemployment problems of these countries. This paper asks two questions: do multi-national firms adapt to labor cost differences by using more labor-intensive methods of production in LDC's than in developed countries and do multinational firms' affiliates in LDC's use more capital-intensive methods than locally-owned firms? We concluded that both U.S.-based and Swedish-based firms do adapt to differences in labor cost, using the most capital-intensive methods of production at home and the least capital-intensive methods in low-wage countries. Among host countries, the higher the labor co...