The Age Distribution of the Labour Force as Evidence of Prior Events: The Italian Data for 1911 and the Long Swing in Investment from Unification to the Great War

34 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2018

See all articles by Roberto Pezzuto

Roberto Pezzuto

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Department of Economics and Finance, Students

Date Written: November 29, 2017

Abstract

Data on the age distribution of the labour force, by activity, appear in numerous early twentieth-century European censuses; but economic historians seem never to have explored them. This paper provides an initial examination of the age-distribution data in the Italian census of 1911, showing how they shed light on various aspects of the economy of the day, and on its preceding path. A point of particular interest is that these data reflect the long cycle in construction, and in the production of construction materials. They further suggest that the long cycle of the engineering industry documented by its aggregate metal consumption was indeed present in the production of construction-related hardware, but notably absent from the production of machinery and, derivatively, industrial investment. This last point denies the empirical premise of the extant interpretations of Italy’s post-Unification industrial growth; but it sits well with the new disaggregated time-series estimates of the engineering industry’s product.

Keywords: Demographic Trends, Geographic Labour Mobility, Job, Occupational, and Intergenerational Mobility, Manufacturing and Construction in Europe Pre-1913

JEL Classification: J11, J61, J62, N33, N63

Suggested Citation

Pezzuto, Roberto, The Age Distribution of the Labour Force as Evidence of Prior Events: The Italian Data for 1911 and the Long Swing in Investment from Unification to the Great War (November 29, 2017). Bank of Italy Economic History Working Paper No. 42. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3123136 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3123136

Roberto Pezzuto (Contact Author)

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Department of Economics and Finance, Students ( email )

Rome
Italy

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