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The globalization of U.S. business investment

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  • Mark A. Wynne
  • Erasmus K. Kersting

Abstract

This paper documents some key facts about foreign direct investment flows by U.S. businesses overseas and foreign businesses in the United States. We show how the pattern of flows has evolved, examine the sources and destination of these flows, document associated employment and productivity gains, and show how investment-related sales compare with traditional exports. While the United States is a net debtor to the rest of the world, direct investment overseas by U.S. businesses exceeds direct investment in the U.S. by foreign businesses. Furthermore, U.S. businesses seem to earn more on their foreign investments than foreign firms earn on their U.S. investments. The globalization of business investment is a long-standing phenomenon, but it has accelerated in recent years and become a source of concern for some, as it is intimately related to the debate on offshore outsourcing. Yet contrary to what some think, the bulk of U.S. investment overseas is in other high-income countries. And foreign investment in the U.S. has been an important source of employment growth in recent years.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas in its journal Staff Papers.

Volume (Year): (2008)
Issue (Month): Feb ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:fip:feddst:y:2008:i:feb:n:3

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Keywords: Investments; Foreign - United States;

References

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  1. Matthew J. Slaughter, 1995. "Multinational Corporations, Outsourcing, and American Wage Divergence," NBER Working Papers 5253, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Robert E. Lipsey, 2001. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Operations of Multinational Firms: Concepts, History, and Data," NBER Working Papers 8665, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Anderson, Richard G & Thursby, Jerry G, 1986. "Confidence Intervals for Elasticity Estimators in Translog Models," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(4), pages 647-56, November.
  4. James R. Markusen, 1995. "The Boundaries of Multinational Enterprises and the Theory of International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 169-189, Spring.
  5. Sjoholm, Fredrik & Lipsey, Robert E, 2006. "Foreign Firms and Indonesian Manufacturing Wages: An Analysis with Panel Data," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55(1), pages 201-21, October.
  6. Kristiina Huttunen, 2007. "The Effect of Foreign Acquisition on Employment and Wages: Evidence from Finnish Establishments," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(3), pages 497-509, August.
  7. Swenson, Deborah L., 2001. "Tax Reforms and Evidence of Transfer Pricing," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 54(n. 1), pages 7-26, March.
  8. Girma, Sourafel & Gorg, Holger, 2007. "Evaluating the foreign ownership wage premium using a difference-in-differences matching approach," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 97-112, May.
  9. Fritz Foley, C. & Hartzell, Jay C. & Titman, Sheridan & Twite, Garry, 2007. "Why do firms hold so much cash? A tax-based explanation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(3), pages 579-607, December.
  10. Rita Almeida, 2004. "The labor market effects of foreign-owned firms," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3300, The World Bank.
  11. Ann E. Harrison & Margaret S. McMillan, 2006. "Outsourcing Jobs? Multinationals and US Employment," NBER Working Papers 12372, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Bee Yan Aw & Sukkyun Chung & Mark J. Roberts, 1998. "Productivity and the Decision to Export: Micro Evidence from Taiwan and South Korea," NBER Working Papers 6558, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Gordon H. Hanson & Raymond J. Mataloni, Jr. & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2001. "Expansion Strategies of U.S. Multinational Firms," NBER Working Papers 8433, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Patrick Honohan & Brendan Walsh, 2002. "Catching Up with the Leaders: The Irish Hare," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 33(1), pages 1-78.
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  1. The Globalization of U.S. Business Investment (by Don Boudreaux)
    by Don Boudreaux in Cafe Hayek on 2008-05-01 14:23:57

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