Résumé EN : In this paper, we study changes in the wage share that occured during the last thirty-five years. Between 1945 and 1978, the wage share in national income has increased from 64% to 74%. But this increase has not been regular, large cyclical variations are sometimes more important than long run changes. We explained short run variations by the practice of labour hoarding. As to the long run, shift from self-employment to wage and salary earners explained the increase of the wage share and the decrease of the property share. Finally, we test the hypothesis that shifts of sector weights has contributed to this increase.
Résumé EN : Following the bursts of inflation registered in the 1970s, many authors pointed to a generalization of the phenomenon of inflation and claimed that in a small economy highly integrated into international markets, the steady rise in general price levels might be attributable to foreign causes. In this context, the "Scandinavian School" gave renewed credibility to the division of the economy into two major categories: sectors exposed to strong international competition and those protected from such competition. In our study, we do not attempt to validate the entire "Scandinavian model", but only to examine the nature of the distinction between exposed and sheltered industries by proposing a list of industries in each of the two categories. In contrast to other work based on the Scandinavian model, the proposed classification presented in this study is based on a measure of the proportion of a sector's output that is exported. Following this arbitrary criterion, we divide the 22 branches of the primary and manufacturing sectors into eleven exposed and eleven sheltered branches. A series of tests are then applied to validate this classification.
Résumé EN : In this paper, we analyze the behaviour of wages of the unionized workers of the construction industry in Canada. We compare the behaviour of construction wages to those observed in the sectors exposed to and protected from international competition. One conclusion of our analysis is that the construction sector is by far the most inflationnary sector of the Canadian economy. Union power in the construction industry combined with the control of labour supply by skilled trades associations in a market which lends itself to bilateral oligopoly can thus lead to wage increases in the construction sector which in the current inflationnary context exceed those in all other sectors of the economy. This situation is possible because construction firms do not have to face the threat of international competition. The result of this situation is to reduce the level of activity and employment in the construction sector. In addition, the mechanism for fixing wages serves to accentuate the cyclical fluctuations in the construction sector.
Résumé EN : The purpose of this paper is both to report on a new methodology in the field of automatic classification, and to discuss the need of these many techniques which are referred to as factor analysis. The paper is designed to explore one group of procedures and to illustrate with a specific example that such a methodology can lead to an awareness of the problem and to a better understanding and forecasting of economic phenomena.
Résumé EN : This paper deals with involuntary unemployment. We suppose that wages fail to clear markets and undertake a disequilibrium analysis of the effect of unemployment insurance (U.I.) on unemployment and production. The disequilibrium model is so constructed as to take into account the impact of U.I. on all markets. The neo-classical paradigm based on an equilibrium approach is contrasted with the neo-keynesian paradigm which assumes persistent disequilibrium. It is shown in this perspective that U.I. has an impact on unemployment when the latter is keynesian in nature rather than classical. We conclude that in order to evaluate empirically the effect of U.I., the various kinds of unemployment under analysis must be distinguished. We find moreover, that a disequilibrium framework is most appropriate for the study of unemployment.
Résumé EN : The method of ARIMA forecasting with benchmarks developed in this paper allows the production of univariate forecasts which take into account the historical information of a series, captured by an ARIMA model (Box and Jenkins, 1970), as well as partial prior information on the future behaviour of the series. The prior information, or benchmarks, stems from the conclusions of a study on the phenomenon to be extrapolated, from forecasts of an annual econometric model or simply from pessimistic, realistic or optimistic scenarios contemplated by the current economic analyst. It may take the form of annual levels to be achieved, of neighbourhoods to be reached for a given time period, of movements to be displayed or more generally of any linear criteria to be satisfied by the forecasted values. By means of this method, the forecaster may then exercize his current economic evaluation and judgement to the fullest extent in deriving the forecasts, since the labouriousness and the "trial and errors" experienced without a systematic method are avoided.
Résumé EN : The topic of the paper is to estimate the importance of the contribution of Sismondi's economic analysis to the classical economic theory. To do this, the theoretical framework and the main concepts of the latter approach are first described. Three main themes allow us to distinguish the classical theory between the other ones: its conception of time and economic evolution, its apprehension of the different categories of economic agents and its analysis of wealth and prices. The paper deals with each theme and analyses its contents and place in Sismondi's work. The study of the relation between time and economie evolution allows the introduction of uncertainty in the perfect foresight classical scheme. As far as the notion of economic agent is concerned, Sismondi specified the classical conception of social classes in capitalism. Finally, in his treatment of wealth and prices, Sismondi emphasizes the importance of market forces and gluts. The conclusions of the paper are the following: Sismondi's approach and classical analysis cannot be interpreted as inconsistent; moreover, Sismondi can be considered both as Ricardo's successor and as Keynes' predecessor.
Résumé EN : Eight giant petrochemical joint ventures will come on stream in Saudi Arabia between 1983 and 1985, reaching full capacity by 1987. While the equity for these complexes will be at least $12 billion, they will benefit from very cheap feedstock making them highly competitive. With the foreign partners in the ventures marketing much of the output abroad and with a growing domestic demand, there should be little difficulty with sales. In any event Saudi Arabia can link the sale of petrochemicals with the availability of crude oil. A re-structuring of the world production of petrochemicals is virtually inevitable, with Saudi Arabia and other countries with cheap feedstock producing bulk petrochemicals while the more industrialized countries concentrate on specialty petrochemicals with a greater value-added. Quebec, with petrochemicals a growth sector, is well placed to take advantage of these changes. Saudi Arabia, which normally runs a substantial trade surpluses with Quebec—some $360 million in 1981—might well opt to invest part of theses surpluses in a petrochemical industry in Quebec.