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试探生产率悖论

华盛顿—过去十年中,大部分发达经济体的生产率增长显著放缓,虽然在计算、移动技术和机器人方面取得了令人印象深刻的进步。表面上看,所有这些进步都应该起到提振生产率的作用,但在作为世界技术创新领导者的美国,2010—2014年企业部门劳动生产率平均还不到过去一个十年的一半。到底发生了什么?

一个最近相当热门的理论是所谓的生产率悖论其实并不存在。生产率增长只是貌似在下降,因为我们用来衡量生产率的统计数据不能充分体现全部最新进展,特别是来自新的、质量更高的信息和通讯技术的进展。如果价格并未体现新产品的质量改进,那么价格平减指数就会被高估,真实产出就会被低估。

此外,怀疑派指出,标准的生产率衡量方法基于GDP,而根据定义,GDP只包含生产出来的产出。消费者剩余被忽略了,而随着谷歌搜索和Facebook等基于互联网的服务为消费者带来巨大的效用,消费者剩余增长非常迅速。

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