The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper examines the effect of globalization on labor markets in the advanced economies, focusing particularly on the claim that increased economic integration has widened the gap between the wages of more skilled and less skilled workers. The broad consensus of research is that globalization, both in terms of increased trade as well as increased capital mobility and foreign direct investment, has had only a modest effect on wages. Instead, changes in technology have led to a pervasive shift in demand for labor that has favored skilled workers to the detriment of less skilled workers.