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Exporting Deflation? Chinese Exports and Japanese Prices

In: China's Growing Role in World Trade

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  • Christian Broda
  • David E. Weinstein

Abstract

Between 1992 and 2002, the Japanese Import Price Index registered a decline of almost 9 percent and Japan entered a period of deflation. We show that much of the correlation between import prices and domestic prices was due to formula biases. Had the IPI been computed using a pure Laspeyres index like the CPI, the IPI would have hardly moved at all. A Laspeyres version of the IPI would have risen 1 percentage point per year faster than the official index. Second we show that Chinese prices did not behave differently from the prices of other importers. Although Chinese prices are substantially lower than the prices of other exporters, they do not exhibit a differential trend. However, we estimate that the typical price per unit quality of a Chinese exporter fell by half between 1992 and 2005. Thus the explosive growth in Chinese exports is attributable to growth in the quality of Chinese exports and the increase in new products being exported by China.

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This chapter was published in:

  • Robert C. Feenstra & Shang-Jin Wei, 2010. "China's Growing Role in World Trade," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number feen07-1, October.
    This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 10459.

    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberch:10459

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    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.:
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    1. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2006. "Globalization and the Gains from Variety," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(2), pages 541-585, May.
    2. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2007. "Defining Price Stability in Japan: A View from America," Monetary and Economic Studies, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan, vol. 25(S1), pages 169-206, December.
    3. Paul Bergin & Rob Feenstra, 2008. "Pass-through of exchange rates and competition between Mexico and China," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    4. Feenstra, Robert C, 1994. "New Product Varieties and the Measurement of International Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 157-77, March.
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    Cited by:
    1. Maurice Obstfeld, 2009. "Time of Troubles: The Yen and Japan's Economy, 1985-2008," NBER Working Papers 14816, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Shin-ichi Fukuda, 2008. "The Rise of China and Sustained Recovery of Japan," CARF F-Series CARF-F-135, Center for Advanced Research in Finance, Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo.
    3. Fu, Xiaolan & Kaplinsky, Raphael & Zhang, Jing, 2012. "The Impact of China on Low and Middle Income Countries’ Export Prices in Industrial-Country Markets," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(8), pages 1483-1496.
    4. Sawhney, Aparna & Kahn, Matthew E., 2012. "Understanding cross-national trends in high-tech renewable power equipment exports to the United States," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 308-318.
    5. Raphael Auer & Andreas M. Fischer, 2008. "The effect of trade with low-income countries on U.S. industry," Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute Working Paper 14, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

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