Working Paper 08/207 - abstract

Investment Abroad and Adjustment at Home: evidence from UK multinational firms (PDF, 222kB)

Helen Simpson

This paper provides new evidence on the effects of overseas FDI on the skill-mix of multinational firms’ home-country operations. The analysis exploits China’s WTO accession to identify the impact of outward investment into a low-wage economy, and uses plant-level data to investigate changes in industrial structure within firms driven by plant closures. As predicted by models of vertical FDI the paper demonstrates that overseas investment in low-wage economies is associated with asymmetric effects on workers in low and high skill industries in the home economy, and in particular with firms closing down plants in low-skill industries.