Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Technology capital and the U.S. current account

Contents:

Author Info

  • Ellen R. McGrattan
  • Edward C. Prescott

Abstract

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) estimates the return on investments of foreign subsidiaries of U.S. multinational companies over the period 1982?2006 averaged 9.4 percent annually after taxes; U.S. subsidiaries of foreign multinationals averaged only 3.2 percent. Two factors distort BEA returns: technology capital and plant-specific intangible capital. Technology capital is accumulated know-how from intangible investments in R&D, brands, and organizations that can be used in foreign and domestic locations. Used abroad, it generates profits for foreign subsidiaries with no foreign direct investment (FDI). Plant-specific intangible capital in foreign subsidiaries is expensed abroad, lowering current profits on FDI and increasing future profits. We develop a multicountry general equilibrium model with an essential role for FDI and apply the BEA?s methodology to construct economic statistics for the model economy. We estimate that mismeasurement of intangible investments accounts for over 60 percent of the difference in BEA returns.

Download Info

If 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.
File URL: http://www.minneapolisfed.org/publications_papers/pub_display.cfm?id=1116
Download Restriction: no

File URL: http://www.minneapolisfed.org/research/SR/SR406.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in its series Staff Report with number 406.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmsr:406

Contact details of provider:
Postal: 90 Hennepin Avenue, P.O. Box 291, Minneapolis, MN 55480-0291
Phone: (612) 204-5000
Web page: http://minneapolisfed.org/
More information through EDIRC

Order Information:
Email:
Web: http://www.minneapolisfed.org/pubs/

Related research

Keywords: International finance ; Technology - Economic aspects;

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
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.:
as in new window
  1. McGrattan, Ellen R. & Prescott, Edward C., 2009. "Openness, technology capital, and development," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(6), pages 2454-2476, November.
  2. Carol Corrado & Charles Hulten & Daniel Sichel, 2005. "Measuring Capital and Technology: An Expanded Framework," NBER Chapters, in: Measuring Capital in the New Economy, pages 11-46 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Enrique G. Mendoza & Vincenzo Quadrini & Jose-Victor Rios-Rull, 2007. "Financial Integration, Financial Deepness and Global Imbalances," NBER Working Papers 12909, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ricardo J. Caballero & Emmanuel Farhi & Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, 2008. "An Equilibrium Model of "Global Imbalances" and Low Interest Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 358-93, March.
  5. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Tomas Dvorak & Francis E. Warnock, 2008. "Cross-border returns differentials," International Finance Discussion Papers 921, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Hélène Rey, 2007. "From World Banker to World Venture Capitalist: U.S. External Adjustment and the Exorbitant Privilege," NBER Chapters, in: G7 Current Account Imbalances: Sustainability and Adjustment, pages 11-66 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. David Backus & Espen Henriksen & Frederic Lambert & Christopher Telmer, 2009. "Current Account Fact and Fiction," NBER Working Papers 15525, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Carol Corrado & John Haltiwanger & Dan Sichel, 2005. "Measuring Capital in the New Economy," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number corr05-1, October.
  9. Ricardo Hausmann and Federico Sturzenegger, 2006. "Global imbalances or bad accounting? The missing dark matter in the wealth of nations," Business School Working Papers globalimbal, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.
  10. Andrew Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter Schott, 2008. "Transfer Pricing by U.S.-Based Multinational Firms," Working Papers 08-29, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  11. Alessandra Fogli & Fabrizio Perri, 2006. "The "Great Moderation" and the US External Imbalance," NBER Working Papers 12708, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Ayanian, Robert, 1975. "Advertising and Rate of Return," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 479-506, October.
  13. Benjamin Bridgman, 2009. "Do Intangible Assets Explain High U.S. Foreign Direct Investment Returns?," 2009 Meeting Papers 373, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  14. Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2004. "Taxes, Regulations, and the Value of U.S. and U.K. Corporations," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000715, UCLA Department of Economics.
  15. Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2003. "Average Debt and Equity Returns: Puzzling?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 392-397, May.
  16. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Tomas Dvorak & Francis E. Warnock, 2008. "Cross-Border Returns Differentials," NBER Working Papers 13768, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Demsetz, Harold, 1979. "Accounting for Advertising as a Barrier to Entry," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 52(3), pages 345-60, July.
  18. Carol Corrado & John Haltiwanger & Daniel Sichel, 2005. "Introduction to "Measuring Capital in the New Economy"," NBER Chapters, in: Measuring Capital in the New Economy, pages 1-10 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Bloch, Harry, 1974. "Advertising and Profitability: A Reappraisal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages 267-86, Part I, M.
  20. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Tomas Dvorak & Francis E. Warnock, 2008. "Cross-Border Returns Differentials," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1495-1530, November.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2007. "Openness, technology capital, and development," Working Papers 651, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  2. Wolfgang Keller & Stephen Ross Yeaple, 2013. "The Gravity of Knowledge," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1414-44, June.
  3. Guadalupe, Maria & Kuzmina, Olga & Thomas, Catherine, 2010. "Innovation and Foreign Ownership," CEPR Discussion Papers 8141, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott & Thomas J. Holmes, 2011. "Technology Capital Transfer," 2011 Meeting Papers 676, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  5. Hiroki Arato & Katsunori Yamada, 2010. "Japan's Intangible Capital and Valuation of Corporations in a Neoclassical Framework," ISER Discussion Paper 0772, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University, revised Nov 2011.
  6. Veronica Rappoport & Catherine Thomas & Bernard Salanie & Maria Guadalupe, 2013. "The Perfect Match: Assortative Matching in International Acquisitions," 2013 Meeting Papers 1000, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  7. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Charles P. Thomas & Francis E. Warnock, 2013. "On Returns Differentials," NBER Working Papers 18866, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Sáez, Antonio José & Prieto, Faustino & Sarabia, José María, 2012. "A two-tail version of the PPS distribution with application to current account balance data," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 391(21), pages 5160-5171.
  9. Ellen McGrattan, 2012. "Transition to FDI Openness: Reconciling Theory and Evidence," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 15(4), pages 437-458, October.
  10. Chen, Kaiji & Imrohoroglu, Ayse & Imrohoroglu, Selahattin, 2009. "A quantitative assessment of the decline in the U.S. current account," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1135-1147, November.
  11. Roe, Terry L. & Shane, Mathew & Heerman, Kari, 2011. "Macroeconomic Imbalances in the World Economy," Working Papers 109244, University of Minnesota, Center for International Food and Agricultural Policy.
  12. Barry Bosworth & Susan M. Collins & Gabriel Chodorow-Reich, 2007. "Returns on FDI: Does the U.S. Really Do Better?," NBER Working Papers 13313, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Curcuru, Stephanie E. & Thomas, Charles P. & Warnock, Francis E., 2013. "On returns differentials," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 1-25.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedmsr:406. See general 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: (Janelle Ruswick).

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.