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Market Size, Competition, and the Product Mix of Exporters

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  • Thierry Mayer

    (Sciences-Po, CEPII and CEPR)

  • Marc J. Melitz

    (Harvard University, NBER and CEPR)

  • Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano

    (Bocconi University, FEEM, Bruegel, CEPR and Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano)

Abstract

We build a theoretical model of multi-product firms that highlights how market size and geography (the market sizes of and bilateral economic distances to trading partners) affect both a firm\'s ex-ported product range and its exported product mix across market destinations (the distribution of sales across products for a given product range). We show how tougher competition in an export market induces a firm to skew its export sales towards its best performing products. We find very strong confirmation of this competitive effect for French exporters across export market destina-tions. Trade models based on exogenous markups cannot explain this strong significant link between destination market characteristics and the within-firm skewness of export sales (after controlling for bilateral trade costs. Theoretically, this within firm change in product mix driven by the trading environment has important repercussions on firm productivity and how it responds to changes in that trading environment.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano in its series Development Working Papers with number 316.

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Length: 41
Date of creation: 17 Oct 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:csl:devewp:316

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  1. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2007. "Firms in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 13054, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Allanson, Paul & Montagna, Catia, 2005. "Multiproduct firms and market structure: An explorative application to the product life cycle," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(7-8), pages 587-597, September.
  3. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum & Francis Kramarz, 2008. "An Anatomy of International Trade: Evidence from French Firms," NBER Working Papers 14610, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano & Gregory Corcos & Massimo Del Gatto & Giordano Mion, 2009. "Productivity and Firm Selection: Quantifying the “New” Gains from Trade," Working Papers 2009.115, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  5. Volker Nocke & Stephen Yeaple, 2006. "Globalization and Endogenous Firm Scope," PIER Working Paper Archive 06-015, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  6. Gianmarco Ottaviano & Thierry Mayer, . "The happy few: the internationalisation of European firms," Blueprints, Bruegel, number 12, December.
  7. Gu, Wulong & Baldwin, John R., 2006. "The Impact of Trade on Plant Scale, Production-Run Length and Diversification," Economic Analysis (EA) Research Paper Series 2006038e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
  8. Marc J. Melitz & Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano, 2005. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," NBER Working Papers 11393, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Andrew B. Bernard & Jonathan Eaton & J. Bradford Jenson & Samuel Kortum, 2000. "Plants and Productivity in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 7688, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Costas Arkolakis & Marc-Andreas Muendler, 2010. "The Extensive Margin of Exporting Products: A Firm-level Analysis," NBER Working Papers 16641, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  12. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/10147 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Elhanan Helpman & Marc J. Melitz & Stephen R. Yeaple, 2004. "Export Versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 300-316, March.
  14. Robert Feenstra & Hong Ma, 2007. "Optimal Choice of Product Scope for Multiproduct Firms under Monopolistic Competition," NBER Working Papers 13703, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. James Harrigan & Haiyan Deng, 2008. "China's Local Comparative Advantage," NBER Working Papers 13963, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  17. Matthieu Crozet & Pamina Koenig, 2010. "Structural gravity equations with intensive and extensive margins," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 43(1), pages 41-62, February.
  18. Arnaud Costinot & Andres Rodriguez-Clare & Costas Arkolakis, 2010. "New Trade Models, Same Old Gains?," 2010 Meeting Papers 433, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  19. Gianmarco Ottaviano & Thierry Mayer, 2007. "The happy few: the internationalisation of European firms New facts based on firm-level evidence," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/10147, Sciences Po.
  20. Timothy Dunne & J. Bradford Jensen & Mark J. Roberts, 2009. "Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number dunn05-1, October.
  21. Redding, Stephen & Venables, Anthony J., 2004. "Economic geography and international inequality," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 53-82, January.
  22. Carsten Eckel & J Peter Neary, 2006. "Multi-Product Firms and Flexible Manufacturing in the Global Economy," Working Papers 200608, School Of Economics, University College Dublin.
  23. Iacovone, Leonardo & Javorcik, Beata S., 2008. "Multi-product exporters : diversification and micro-level dynamics," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4723, The World Bank.
  24. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2011. "Gravity, market potential and economic development," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(2), pages 281-294, March.
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