Globalization and the Gains from Variety
AbstractSince the seminal work of Krugman, product variety has played a central role in models of trade and growth. In spite of the general use of love-of-variety models, there has been no systematic study of how the import of new varieties has contributed to national welfare gains in the United States. In this paper we show that the unmeasured growth in product variety from U. S. imports has been an important source of gains from trade over the last three decades (1972-2001). Using extremely disaggregated data, we show that the number of imported product varieties has increased by a factor of three. We also estimate the elasticities of substitution for each available category at the same level of aggregation, and describe their behavior across time and SITC industries. Using these estimates, we develop an exact aggregate price index and find that the upward bias in the conventional import price index over this time period was 28 percent or 1.2 percentage points per year. We estimate the value to U. S. consumers of the expanded import varieties between 1972 and 2001 to be 2.6 percent of GDP. Copyright (c) 2006 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology..
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by MIT Press in its journal Quarterly Journal of Economics.
Volume (Year): 121 (2006)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
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Web page: http://mitpress.mit.edu/journals/
Other versions of this item:
- David Weinstein & Christian Broda, 2004. "Globalization and the Gains from Variety," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 508, Econometric Society.
- Christian Broda & David Weinstein, 2004. "Globalization and the gains from variety," Staff Reports 180, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
- David E. Weinstein & Christian Broda, 2004. "Globalization And The Gains From Variety," Econometric Society 2004 Latin American Meetings 327, Econometric Society.
- David Weinstein & Christian Broda, 2004. "Globalization and the Gains from Variety," 2004 Meeting Papers 530, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2004. "Globalization and the Gains from Variety," NBER Working Papers 10314, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- F1 - International Economics - - Trade
- E3 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles
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