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Designing Policies to Open Trade

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  • Robert C. Feenstra
  • Tracy R. Lewis
  • John McMillan

Abstract

In this paper we consider recent proposals to auction U.S. import quotas. using the funds so obtained to encourage relocation out of the protected industries. We argue that the information available to the government, or lack thereof, is a critical factor in understanding these policies. In a world or full information, it makes little sense to use auction quotas rather than tariffs. Similarly, it is unclear why an elaborate program of temporary protection is needed, rather than immediately opening trade and compensating people with an income transfer. When the government has Limited information, however, these policies become quite sensible and may even be optimal.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3258.

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Date of creation: Feb 1990
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3258

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  1. Roger B. Myerson, 1978. "Optimal Auction Design," Discussion Papers 362, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  2. Robert C. Feenstra & Tracy R. Lewis, 1991. "Trade Adjustment Assistance and Pareto Gains From Trade," NBER Working Papers 3845, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Feenstra, Robert C & Lewis, Tracy R, 1991. "Negotiated Trade Restrictions with Private Political Pressure," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(4), pages 1287-307, November.
  4. Wilson, Robert, 1977. "A Bidding Model of Perfect Competition," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 511-18, October.
  5. McAfee, R. Preston & McMillan, John., 1990. "Bidding Rings," Working Papers 726, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  6. Dixit, Avinash, 1987. "Trade and insurance with moral hazard," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3-4), pages 201-220, November.
  7. Diamond, Peter A & Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production: I--Production Efficiency," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(1), pages 8-27, March.
  8. Dixit, Avinash, 1989. "Trade and Insurance with Imperfectly Observed Outcomes," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(1), pages 195-203, February.
  9. Brander, James A. & Spencer, Barbara J., 1994. "Trade adjustment assistance : Welfare and incentive effects of payments to displaced workers," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3-4), pages 239-261, May.
  10. James E. Anderson, 1988. "The Relative Inefficiency of Quotas," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262511789, January.
  11. Milgrom, Paul R & Weber, Robert J, 1982. "A Theory of Auctions and Competitive Bidding," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(5), pages 1089-1122, September.
  12. Grossman, Gene M & Shapiro, Carl, 1982. "A Theory of Factor Mobility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(5), pages 1054-69, October.
  13. Grossman, Gene M & Horn, Henrik, 1988. "Infant-Industry Protection Reconsidered: The Case of Informational Barriers to Entry," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(4), pages 767-87, November.
  14. Kyle Bagwell & R. Staiger, 1987. "The Role of Export Subsidies When Product Quality is Unknown," Discussion Papers 758, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  15. McAfee, R Preston & McMillan, John, 1987. "Auctions and Bidding," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 25(2), pages 699-738, June.
  16. Jensen, Richard & Thursby, Marie, 1990. "Tariffs with private information and reputation," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1-2), pages 43-67, August.
  17. Lewis, T.R. & Ware, R. & Feenstra, R., 1988. "Eliminating Price Supports: A Political Economy Perspective," Papers 319, California Davis - Institute of Governmental Affairs.
  18. Myerson, Roger B, 1979. "Incentive Compatibility and the Bargaining Problem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 61-73, January.
  19. Charles Engel & Kenneth Kletzer, 1987. "Trade Policy under Endogenous Credibility," NBER Working Papers 2449, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Hendricks, Kenneth & Porter, Robert H, 1988. "An Empirical Study of an Auction with Asymmetric Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(5), pages 865-83, December.
  21. Dixit, Avinash & Norman, Victor, 1986. "Gains from trade without lump-sum compensation," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1-2), pages 111-122, August.
  22. Kenneth A. Froot, 1989. "Credibility, Real Interest Rates, and the Optimal Speed of Trade Liberalization," NBER Working Papers 2358, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Michael H. Riordan & Robert W. Staiger, 1988. "Sectoral Shocks and Structural Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 2522, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Kala Krishna, 1991. "The Case of the Vanishing Revenues: Auction Quotas with Monopoly," NBER Working Papers 2840, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Richard A. Brecher & Ehsan U. Choudhri, 1990. "Gains from International Factor Movements without Lump-Sum Compensation: Taxation by Location versus Nationality," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 23(1), pages 44-59, February.
  26. Raquel Fernandez, 1988. "Tariffs in an Economy with Incomplete Markets and Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 2705, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. Milgrom, Paul R, 1979. "A Convergence Theorem for Competitive Bidding with Differential Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(3), pages 679-88, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Thierry Verdier, 2005. "Intégration commerciale « socialement responsable » : une approche en termes d'économie politique," Revue d’économie du développement, De Boeck Université, vol. 19(4), pages 55-121.
  2. Dinopoulos, Elias & Lewis, Tracy R. & Sappington, David E. M., 1995. "Optimal industrial targeting with unknown learning-by-doing," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 275-295, May.

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