Friday, March 16, 2007

French Productivity

Cafe Hayek's Donald J. Boudreaux has an excellent article in the Cristian Science Monitor on statistics and French productivity. He notes that the French are frequently more productive than their American counterparts, despite working less hours and generally being French.

France's labor regulations are much more burdensome than those in the US. By artificially raising the cost of hiring workers in France, these regulations make it unprofitable to hire the lowest-skilled workers. One result is that only higher-skilled workers get jobs in France. But because US labor regulations are less restrictive, a higher proportion of low-skilled workers find jobs in America.

With a larger proportion of highly skilled workers, France's average productivity is bound to be higher.

An excellent piece, I recommend reading it all. It offers a number of observations on the use of statistics in economics.


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