Hollweg, Claire H.
Macroeconomics, Trade, and Investment Global Practice
Author Name Variants
Fields of Specialization
International trade, Global value chains, Services, Labor markets, Development economics
Macroeconomics, Trade, and Investment Global Practice
Externally Hosted Work
Last updated January 31, 2023
Claire H. Hollweg is a senior economist with the Macroeconomics, Trade, and Investment Global Practice of the World Bank. Before studying economics, she worked as a journalist. She has worked with the government of South Australia and the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council in Singapore. Her research interests include development economics, with a focus on the nexus between trade, labor markets, servicification of manufacturing, and upgrading in global value chains. She holds a PhD and an MA in economics from the University of Adelaide.
Publication Search Results
Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
Seeking Shared Prosperity through Trade(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-06) Cali, Massimiliano ; Hollweg, Claire H. ; Ruppert Bulmer, ElizabethIncreasing the trade integration of developing countries can make a vital contribution to boosting shared prosperity, but it also exposes producers and consumers to exogenous shocks that alter relative prices, sometimes positively and sometimes negatively. This paper discusses the short-run effects of trade-related shocks on households to capture the potential welfare impact on the poor. The discussion explores the channels through which trade shocks are transmitted to households in the bottom of the income distribution, namely through consumption, household production, and market-based labor activities. The degree to which price shocks are passed through from borders to point of sale is a key determinant of the gains from trade and the ultimate welfare impact. Trade changes in agriculture directly affect households through their consumption basket. Lower agricultural prices reduce the cost of consumables, but these welfare gains may be offset by lower earnings for households that produce these same goods. Poorer households tend to be net consumers of agricultural products, suggesting a net welfare gain, but agricultural wage workers could suffer from wage cuts. Because poorer households tend to consume relatively fewer nonagricultural products, that is nonessentials, any trade-related shocks to prices of nonagricultural product are likely to be transmitted via labor channels. Despite significant evidence that nonagricultural trade reform ultimately leads to job creation and enhanced productivity, the short-run effects can be mixed. The costs incurred by workers to transition to new jobs slow the adjustment of the economy to a new steady state. Labor mobility costs, which tend to be higher in developing countries and for unskilled workers, reduce the potential gains to trade by diverting labor market adjustment from its most efficient path.
What is Behind Labor Mobility Costs? Evidence from Indonesia(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2019-09) Cali, Massimiliano ; Hidayat, Taufik ; Hollweg, Claire H.The ability of workers to transition to a new job is crucial to determine the resilience of an economy to (positive or negative) shocks. This paper provides new evidence on the factors that affect labor mobility by using labor data on Indonesia, one of countries with the higher estimated labor mobility costs. To do so it investigates correlates of the probability of an individual finding a job after a negative labor market shock, as well as of the duration of job search. The results show that higher housing prices are associated with higher mobility costs, suggesting that housing benefits or policies that increase the supply of housing may help reduce mobility costs in Indonesia. More generally, public expenditure on infrastructure seems to reduce labor mobility costs, particularly in urban areas, consistently with a reduction in transaction costs – such as urban transport. The results also highlight that formal institutional mechanisms such as job advertisements do not appear to work effectively to help labor mobility in Indonesia, suggesting the need to re-think active labor market policies. On the other hand, minimum wage level – a key outcome of labor market policy - does not appear to affect labor mobility. Labor mobility costs seem higher in urban areas, which could indicate a lower opportunity cost of joblessness than in rural area, employment composition skewed towards sectors with higher mobility costs and/or large congestion costs that negatively affect labor mobility. On the other hand, the general female penalty in labor mobility is less accentuated in urban areas, which may be the result of sectoral composition and/or less discriminatory cultural norms than in rural areas.
How Much Labor Do South African Exports Contain?(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2017-04) Cali, Massimiliano ; Hollweg, Claire H.Like many emerging economies, South Africa has identified exports as an engine for more inclusive, job-intensive growth. However, employment growth did not follow the substantial export growth that South Africa experienced in the 2000s. This paper uses a newly developed World Bank database -- the Labor Content of Exports -- to show that the composition of South Africa's export growth helps to understand the weak relationship between export and employment growth. Minerals exports, which propelled export as well as wage growth, are not job intensive and as a result supported far less job growth. Minerals have also increasingly become an enclave sector with few backward linkages to the domestic economy. In contrast, manufacturing exports support jobs and wages primarily in input-providing sectors, where indirect manufacturing employment is nearly 4.5 times greater than direct manufacturing employment. The paper also documents a shift in the labor content of global value chain–intensive manufacturing sectors away from direct manufacturing to indirect services. Such a shift has been biased toward skilled labor. As a results of these trends, labor in services sectors has been the main beneficiary of South Africa's export growth, absorbing more than half of the growth in wage income from exports over the 2000s, primarily by supplying inputs to other sectors' exports.
The Labor Content of Exports Database(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-03) Cali, Massimiliano ; Francois, Joseph ; Hollweg, Claire H. ; Manchin, Miriam ; Oberdabernig, Doris Anita ; Rojas-Romagosa, Hugo ; Rubinova, Stela ; Tomberger, PatrickThis paper develops a novel methodology to measure the quantity of jobs and value of wages embodied in exports for a large number of countries and sectors for intermittent years between 1995 and 2011. The resulting Labor Content of Exports database allows the examination of the direct contribution of labor to exports as well as the indirect contribution via other sectors of the economy for skilled and unskilled labor. The analysis of the new data sets documents several new findings. First, the global share of labor value added in exports has been declining globally since 1995, but it has increased in low-income countries. Second, in line with the standard Hecksher-Ohlin trade model, the composition of labor directly contained in exports is skewed toward skilled labor in high-income countries relative to developing countries. However, that is not the case for the indirect labor content of exports. Third, manufacturing exports are a key source of labor demand in other sectors, especially in middle- and low-income countries. And the majority of the indirect demand for labor spurred by exports is in services sectors, whose workers are the largest beneficiaries of exporting activities globally. Fourth, differences in the labor value added in exports share across developing countries appears to be driven more by differences in the composition of exports rather than in sector labor intensities. Finally, average wages typically increase rapidly enough with the process of economic development to more than compensate the loss in jobs per unit of exports. The paper also includes the necessary information to build the Labor Content of Exports database from the original raw data, including stata do-files and matlab files, as well as descriptions of the variables in the data set.