Putting per-capita income back into trade theory
AbstractA major role for per-capita income in international trade, as opposed to simply country size, was persuasively advanced by many early economists including Linder (1961), Kuznets (1966), and Chenery and Syrquin (1975). Yet this crucial element of their story was abandon by most later trade economists in favor of the analytically-tractable but counter-empirical assumption that all countries share identical and homothetic preferences. This paper presents a set of assumptions which produces multiple results when they hold jointly. Most of these results are novel, but several that are implicit or explicit in earlier literature are also noted for completeness. Adding non-homothetic preferences to traditional models helps explain such diverse phenomena as a growing skill premium, the mystery of the missing trade, home bias in consumption, the behavior of trade to GDP ratios, and the role of intra-country income distribution, from the demand side of general equilibrium. With imperfect competition, we can explain higher markups and higher price levels in higher per-capita income countries, and the puzzle that gravity equations show a positive dependence of trade on per-capita-incomes, aggregate income held constant. The model also predicts horizontal multinational activity is negatively related to per-capita income differences between countries.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Economics.
Volume (Year): 90 (2013)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505552
Per-capita income; Non-homothetic preferences; Skill-premium puzzle; Missing-trade puzzle;
Other versions of this item:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- David Hummels & Volodymyr Lugovskyy, 2009.
"International Pricing in a Generalized Model of Ideal Variety,"
Journal of Money, Credit and Banking,
Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(s1), pages 3-33, 02.
- David L. Hummels & Volodymyr Lugovskyy, 2008. "International pricing in a generalized model of ideal variety," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Hallak, Juan Carlos, 2006. "Product quality and the direction of trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 238-265, January.
- Devashish Mitra & Vitor Trindade, 2003.
"Inequality and Trade,"
NBER Working Papers
10087, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ina Simonovska, 2010.
"Income Differences and Prices of Tradables,"
NBER Working Papers
16233, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ina Simonovska, 2010. "Income differences and prices of tradables," Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute Working Paper 55, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
- Ina Simonovska, 2011. "Income Differences and Prices of Tradables," Working Papers 1015, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
- Ina Simonovska, 2009. "Income Differences and Prices of Tradables," 2009 Meeting Papers 692, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Bowen, Harry P & Leamer, Edward E & Sveikauskas, Leo, 1987.
"Multicountry, Multifactor Tests of the Factor Abundance Theory,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 77(5), pages 791-809, December.
- Harry P. Bowen & Edward E. Leamer & Leo Sveikauskas, 1986. "Multicountry, Multifactor Tests of the Factor Abundance Theory," NBER Working Papers 1918, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Markusen, James R. & Venables, Anthony J., 1988.
"Trade policy with increasing returns and imperfect competition : Contradictory results from competing assumptions,"
Journal of International Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 24(3-4), pages 299-316, May.
- Markusen, James R. & Venables, Anthony J., 1986. "Trade Policy with Increasing Returns and Imperfect Competition: Contradictory Results from Competing Assumptions," CEPR Discussion Papers 120, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Markusen, James R, 1986. "Explaining the Volume of Trade: An Eclectic Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(5), pages 1002-11, December.
- Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1998. "The Regionalization of the World Economy," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number fran98-1.
- Pablo D. Fajgelbaum & Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 2009.
"Income Distribution, Product Quality, and International Trade,"
NBER Working Papers
15329, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Pablo Fajgelbaum & Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 2011. "Income Distribution, Product Quality, and International Trade," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 119(4), pages 721 - 765.
- Fajgelbaum, Pablo & Grossman, Gene M. & Helpman, Elhanan, 2011. "Income distribution, product quality, and international trade," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5843, The World Bank.
- Hakura, Dalia S., 2001. "Why does HOV fail?: The role of technological differences within the EC," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 361-382, August.
- Choi, Yo Chul & Hummels, David & Xiang, Chong, 2009.
"Explaining import quality: The role of the income distribution,"
Journal of International Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 293-303, July.
- Choi, Yo Chul & Hummels, David & Xiang, Chong, 2009. "Explaining import quality: The role of the income distribution," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 265-275, April.
- Robert C. Feenstra & James R. Markusen & Andrew K. Rose, 2001. "Using the gravity equation to differentiate among alternative theories of trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 34(2), pages 430-447, May.
- Markusen, James R & Wigle, Randall M, 1990. "Explaining the Volume of North-South Trade," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(403), pages 1206-15, December.
- James Cassing & Shuichiro Nishioka, 2009. "Nonhomothetic Tastes and Missing Trade of Factor Services," Working Papers 09-03, Department of Economics, West Virginia University.
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wendy Shamier).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.