A new study shows that companies that use robots quickly tend to increase workers’ wages, while industry unemployment is more concentrated in companies that make the change slower.
The study was co authored by Daron Acemoglu, an economist at MIT, Clair lelarge, a senior research economist at the center for banking and economic policy research in France, and Pascual, an assistant professor of economics at Boston University Restrepo reviewed the process of introducing robots into French manufacturing industry, and explained the business dynamics and the impact on labor force in detail.
The results support the theory that manufacturers adopting robots as early as possible can reduce production costs and develop at the expense of competitors with constant costs.
In fact, the study shows that from 2010 to 2015, the use of industrial robots in the manufacturing industry increased by 20%, resulting in a 3.2% decline in employment in the whole industry.
However, for companies using robots during this period, working hours increased by 10.9% and wages rose slightly.
For this study, the researchers studied nearly 55500 French manufacturing companies, including about 600 robots purchased between 2010 and 2015.
The study used data provided by the French Ministry of industry, customer data of French robot suppliers, customs data on imported robots and company level financial data on sales, employment and wages.
During the five-year period, 598 companies did buy robots, accounting for only 1% of manufacturing companies, but about 20% of manufacturing production.
The industries that add robots most in the production line are pharmaceutical, chemical and plastic, food and beverage, metal and machinery, and automobile. More information can be found in Zhengong chain.
Companies with the least investment in robotics include paper and printing, textiles and clothing, household appliances, furniture and minerals.
Companies that do add robots to the production process become more productive and profitable, while the use of automation reduces their share of labor, with some of the income going to workers, about 4% to 6%.
However, as their investment in technology has driven more growth and more market share, more workers have been added in general.
In contrast, the labor share of companies that did not increase robots has not changed, while for every 10% increase in the number of competitors using robots, the employment of these companies will decrease by 2.5%.
Essentially, companies that don’t invest in technology lose out among competitors.
The dynamics of competition that the researchers found in France are similar to another economics study recently published by MIT professors. More information is in the industry chain.
In a recent paper, MIT economists David Ott and John van Reien and their three co authors published evidence that the decline of labor share in the whole United States is driven by the achievements of “superstar companies”, reducing their labor share and gaining market power.
Although these elite companies may employ more workers and even pay relatively higher wages as they grow up, the labor share of their industries has declined in general.
Professor asemoglu commented: “this is very complementary. However, slightly different is that “superstar company” comes from many different sources. By obtaining these individual company level technical data, we can prove that many of them are related to automation. “.