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Working Paper - Which Caused More Job Losses in the United States: Chinese Import Competition or the Pandemic?

Date: 2022-07-30    Source: 

No. 2022003                                                                     

July 2022


Yu Ji, Wei Tian and Miaojie Yu



Studies have found that Chinese import competition and the COVID-19 pandemic have caused loss of jobs in the United States. Using state-level panel data from 2017 to 2021, this paper finds that both Chinese import competition and COVID-19 confirmed cases have had negative impacts on US manufacturing employment, but the impact of import competition has been larger. The findings are robust to additional controls and various specifications. The effects are heterogeneous by industry. Employment in the service sector has been significantly damaged by increasingly severe COVID-19 but not directly affected by imports from China. By contrast, employment in labor-intensive manufacturing industries has been more vulnerable to both Chinese import penetration and COVID-19. The analysis finds heterogeneous impacts of the two factors in states with different economic conditions and reactions to the pandemic.

Keywords: import competition; COVID-19; employment

JELE24, F16, L60, I18

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      Which Caused More Job Losses in the United States - Chinese Import Competition or the Pandemic.pdf