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Trade, firm selection, and innovation: the competition channel

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  • Giammario Impullitti
  • Omar Licandro

Abstract

The availability of rich ?rm-level data has led researchers to uncover new evidence on the effects of trade liberalization. First, trade openness forces the least productive fi?rms to exit the market; secondly, it induces surviving fi?rms to increase their innovation efforts; thirdly, it increases the degree of product market competition. In this paper, we propose a model aimed at providing a coherent interpretation of these ?ndings, and use it to asses the role of fi?rm selection in shaping the aggregate welfare gains from trade. We introduce ?firm heterogeneity into an innovation-driven growth model where incumbent fi?rms operating in oligopolistic industries perform cost-reducing innovation. In this environment, trade liberalization leads to lower markups level and dispersion, tougher fi?rm selection, and more innovation. Calibrated to match US aggregate and fi?rm-level statistics, the model predicts that moving from a 13% variable trade costs to free trade increases the stationary annual rate of productivity growth from 1:19 to 1:29% and increases welfare by about 3% of steady state consumption. Selection accounts for about 1/4th of the overall growth increase and 2/5th of the welfare gains from trade.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Nottingham, School of Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 13/04.

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Date of creation: Apr 2013
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Handle: RePEc:not:notecp:13/04

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Keywords: International Trade; Heterogeneous Firms; Oligopoly; Innovation; Endogenous Markups; Welfare; Competition. JEL codes: F12; F13; O31; O41;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Navas Antonio & Licandro Omar, 2011. "Trade Liberalization, Competition and Growth," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 11(1), pages 1-28, May.
  2. Schröder, Philipp J.H. & Sørensen, Allan, 2012. "Firm exit, technological progress and trade," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 579-591.
  3. M.A. Boermans & H.J. Roelfsema, 2013. "The Effects of Internationalization on Innovation: Firm-Level Evidence for Transition Economies," Working Papers 12-04, Utrecht School of Economics.
  4. Gao, Xiang, 2009. "Macroeconomic Analysis on the Basis of Trade Theory: A Review Essay," MPRA Paper 18380, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Peters, Katrin & Schnitzer, Monika, 2012. "Trade liberalization and credit constraints: Why opening up may fail to promote convergence," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 380, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
  6. Pradhan, Jaya Prakash, 2011. "Regional heterogeneity and firms’ innovation: the role of regional factors in industrial R&D in India," MPRA Paper 28096, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Impullitti, Giammario & Irarrazabal, Alfonso A. & Opromolla, Luca David, 2013. "A theory of entry into and exit from export markets," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 75-90.

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