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The Gravity Equation in International Trade

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  • Michele Fratianni

    (Department of Business Economics and Public Policy, Indiana University Kelley School of Business)

Abstract

This chapter offers a selective survey of the gravity equation (GE) in international trade. This equation started in the Sixties as a purely empirical proposition to explain bilateral trade flows, without little or no theoretical underpinnings. At the end of the Seventies, the GE was "legitimized" by a series of theoretical articles that demonstrated that the basic GE form was consistent with various models of trade flows. Empirical applications of GE expanded to cover a variety of issues, such as the impact of regional trade agreements, national borders and currency unions on trade, as well as the use of the equation to sort out the relative merit of alternative trade theories. A new wave of studies is now concentrating on the general equilibrium properties of the GE and finer econometrics points. The renewed interest of the academic profession in the development of the GE is undoubtedly driven by the equation’s empirical success.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy in its series Working Papers with number 2007-17.

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Date of creation: Aug 2007
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Publication status: Forthcoming in Handbook of International Business, 2nd Edition
Handle: RePEc:iuk:wpaper:2007-17

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Keywords: gravity equation; trade theories; borders; regional trade agreement; currency unions;

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References

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  1. Simon J. Evenett & Wolfgang Keller, 2002. "On Theories Explaining the Success of the Gravity Equation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(2), pages 281-316, April.
  2. Bergstrand, Jeffrey H, 1985. "The Gravity Equation in International Trade: Some Microeconomic Foundations and Empirical Evidence," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(3), pages 474-81, August.
  3. McCallum, John, 1995. "National Borders Matter: Canada-U.S. Regional Trade Patterns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 615-23, June.
  4. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2001. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 8079, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Carrere, Celine, 2006. "Revisiting the effects of regional trade agreements on trade flows with proper specification of the gravity model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 223-247, February.
  6. Alan V. Deardorff, 1995. "Determinants of Bilateral Trade: Does Gravity Work in a Neoclassical World?," NBER Working Papers 5377, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. John F. Helliwell, 1996. "Do National Borders Matter for Quebec's Trade?," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(3), pages 507-22, August.
  8. Soloaga, Isidro & Winters, L. Alan, 1999. "Regionalism in the Nineties: What Effect on Trade?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2183, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Torsten Persson, 2001. "Currency unions and trade: how large is the treatment effect?," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 16(33), pages 433-462, October.
  10. Jon Haveman & David Hummels, 2004. "Alternative hypotheses and the volume of trade: the gravity equation and the extent of specialization," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 37(1), pages 199-218, February.
  11. James E. Rauch, 1996. "Networks versus Markets in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 5617, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Robert C. Feenstra & James R. Markusen & Andrew K. Rose, 2001. "Using the gravity equation to differentiate among alternative theories of trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 34(2), pages 430-447, May.
  13. Bergstrand, Jeffrey H, 1989. "The Generalized Gravity Equation, Monopolistic Competition, and the Factor-Proportions Theory in International Trade," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(1), pages 143-53, February.
  14. Andrew K. Rose, 2000. "One money, one market: the effect of common currencies on trade," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 15(30), pages 7-46, 04.
  15. Helpman, Elhanan, 1987. "Imperfect competition and international trade: Evidence from fourteen industrial countries," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 62-81, March.
  16. Anderson, James E, 1979. "A Theoretical Foundation for the Gravity Equation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(1), pages 106-16, March.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Giorgio Fagiolo, 2009. "The International-Trade Network: Gravity Equations and Topological Properties," Papers 0908.2086, arXiv.org.
  2. Luca RICCETTI, 2011. "A Copula-GARCH Model for Macro Asset Allocation of a Portfolio with Commodities: an Out-of-Sample Analysis," Working Papers 355, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.
  3. Luca RICCETTI, 2010. "Minimum Tracking Error Volatility," Working Papers 340, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.
  4. Jaume Roselló Nadal & María Santana Gallego, 2012. "Climate change and global international tourism: An evaluation for different scenarios," DEA Working Papers 52, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Departament d'Economía Aplicada.
  5. Subhani, Muhammad Imtiaz, 2009. "Bilateral trade: a study on SAARC countries," MPRA Paper 36158, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Chang Hoon Oh & Michele Fratianni, 2010. "Do Additional Bilateral Investment Treaties Boost Foreign Direct Investments?," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 43, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
  7. Michele Fratianni & Francesco Marchionne, 2011. "Trade Costs and Economic Development," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 54, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
  8. Johan Fourie & Maria Santana-Gallego, 2011. "The Determinants of African Tourism," Working Papers 260, Economic Research Southern Africa.
  9. Martin Falk, 2012. "Determinants of Greenfield Investment in Knowledge Intensive Business Services," FIW Research Reports series IV-002, FIW.
  10. Marco Dueñas & Giorgio Fagiolo, 2013. "Modeling the International-Trade Network: a gravity approach," Journal of Economic Interaction and Coordination, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 155-178, April.
  11. Aggarwal, Raj & Kearney, Colm & Lucey, Brian, 2012. "Gravity and culture in foreign portfolio investment," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 525-538.
  12. Ugo FRATESI, 2010. "The National and International Effects;of Regional Policy Choices: Agglomeration Economies, Peripherality and Territorial Characteristics," Working Papers 344, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.
  13. Shehata, Emad Abd Elmessih, 2011. "الآثار الإقتصادية للتجارة الخارجية بين مصر والكوميسا بإستخدام نموذج الجاذبية للتحليل المكانى
    [Economic Impact for Tr
    ," MPRA Paper 43395, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Dec 2011.
  14. Michele Fratianni & Francesco Marchionne, 2009. "The Limits to Integration," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 20, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
  15. Fabio FIORILLO & Agnese SACCHI, 2010. "I Want to Free-ride. An Opportunistic View on Decentralization Versus Centralization Problem," Working Papers 346, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.

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