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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Market Failures and Misallocation


I develop a method to measure and separate the production misallocation caused by failures in factor markets versus financial markets. When I apply the method to rice farming villages in Thailand I find surprisingly little misallocation. Optimal reallocation would increase output in most villages by less than 15 percent. By 2006 most misallocation comes from factor market failures. I derive a decomposition of aggregate growth that accounts for misallocation. Declining misallocation contributes little to growth compared to factor accumulation and rising farm productivity. I use a government credit intervention to test my measures. I confirm that credit causes a statistically significant decrease in only financial market misallocation.

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