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Decomposing Firm-level Sales Variation

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  • Jakob R. Munch

    (Department of Economics, University of Copenhagen)

  • Daniel X.

    (Department of Economics, University of Copenhagen)

Abstract

We measure the contribution of firm-specific effects to overall sales variation within a destination and find it remarkably low. Our empirical decomposition is structurally motivated by a heterogeneity model of exporting involving destination-specific, firm-specific, and firm-destination-specific latent effects with incidental truncation. We use a highly detailed dataset with exports by products and destinations for all Danish manufacturing firms. We find the contribution of firm-specific heterogeneity to within-destination sales variation varies greatly across HS6 products, and that for the median product it drives 31% of the sales variation. When we remove first-time exports from our sample, the median value increases to 40%, implying that firm-destination-specific effects are most important the first year. We conclude that while firm-specific productivity can account for some of the variation, the majority is explained by firm-destination-specific heterogeneity sources such as firm-destination-specific demand.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics in its series EPRU Working Paper Series with number 2009-05.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2008
Date of revision: Jun 2009
Handle: RePEc:kud:epruwp:09-05

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Related research

Keywords: firm heterogeneity; firm-level export data; truncation correction;

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References

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  1. Jonathan Eaton & Marcela Eslava & Maurice Kugler & James Tybout, 2007. "Export Dynamics in Colombia:Firm-Level Evidence," BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA 003957, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA.
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  3. Elhanan Helpman & Marc Melitz & Yona Rubinstein, 2008. "Estimating Trade Flows: Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(2), pages 441-487, 05.
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  5. Andrew B Bernard & Jonathan Eaton & J. Bradford Jensen & Samuel Kortum, 2000. "Plants and productivity in international trade," Working Papers 00-08, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  6. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2007. "Firms in International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(3), pages 105-130, Summer.
  7. Richard T. Carson & Yixiao Sun, 2007. "The Tobit model with a non-zero threshold," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 10(3), pages 488-502, November.
  8. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum & Francis Kramarz, 2004. "Dissecting Trade: Firms, Industries, and Export Destinations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 150-154, May.
  9. Sofronis Clerides & Saul Lach & James Tybout, 1996. "Is "learning-by-exporting" important? Micro-dynamic evidence from Colombia, Mexico and Morocco," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 96-30, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  10. Lawless, Martina & Whelan, Karl, 2008. "Where do Firms Export, How Much and Why?," Research Technical Papers 6/RT/08, Central Bank of Ireland.
  11. Eaton, Jonathan & Kortum, Samuel S & Kramarz, Francis, 2009. "An Anatomy of International Trade: Evidence from French Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 7111, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Cramer, J. S., 1987. "Mean and variance of R2 in small and moderate samples," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 35(2-3), pages 253-266, July.
  13. James E. Rauch, 1996. "Networks versus Markets in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 5617, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  15. Cabral, Luís M B & Mata, José, 2001. "On the Evolution of the Firm Size Distribution: Facts and Theory," CEPR Discussion Papers 3045, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Bernard, Andrew B. & Jensen, J. Bradford & Schott, Peter K., 2006. "Trade costs, firms and productivity," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(5), pages 917-937, July.
  17. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum, 2002. "Technology, Geography, and Trade," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(5), pages 1741-1779, September.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Stephen J Redding & Peter K Schott & Andrew B Bernard, 2007. "Multi-product Firms and Trade Liberalization," 2007 Meeting Papers 44, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Raphael A. Auer, 2013. "Product Heterogeneity, Cross-Country Taste Differences, and the Consumption Home Bias," Working Papers 13.01, Swiss National Bank, Study Center Gerzensee.
  3. DI COMITE, Francesco & THISSE , Jacques & ,, 2013. "Verti-zontal differentiation in export markets," CORE Discussion Papers 2013064, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  4. Gormsen, Christian, 2009. "Intransparent Markets and Intra-Industry Trade," Working Papers 09-20, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
  5. Roc Armenter & Miklós Koren, 2009. "Economies of Scale and the Size of Exporters," CeFiG Working Papers 7, Center for Firms in the Global Economy, revised 12 Mar 2009.
  6. Morales, Eduardo & Sheu, Gloria & Zahler, Andrés, 2011. "Gravity and extended gravity: estimating a structural model of export entry," MPRA Paper 30311, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Daniel X. Nguyen, 2010. "Demand Uncertainty: Exporting Delays and Exporting Failures," Discussion Papers 10-17, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  8. Eduardo Morales & Gloria Sheu & Andrés Zahler, 2014. "Gravity and Extended Gravity: Using Moment Inequalities to Estimate a Model of Export Entry," NBER Working Papers 19916, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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