The Decline of Traditional Sectors in Israel: The Role of the Exchange Rate and the Minimum Wage


Eric V. Clifton

Publication Date:

December 1, 1998

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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF.The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate


This paper examines the role of exchange rate appreciation and the minimum wage in the relative decline of traditional sectors in Israel. It finds little evidence to indicate that real exchange rate appreciation is primarily responsible for this decline. Rather, the evidence indicates that slower productivity growth in traditional sectors has led to relatively larger increases in unit labor costs compared with high-tech sectors. Although the links are only indicative, the evidence also suggests that the minimum wage has played a role in the relatively faster growth in unit labor costs.


Working Paper No. 1998/167



Publication Date:

December 1, 1998



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