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Multi-Product Firms and Flexible Manufacturing in the Global Economy

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  • Peter Neary
  • Carsten Eckel

Abstract

We present a new model of multi-product firms (MPFs) and flexible manufacturing and explore its implications in partial and general equilibrium. International trade integration affects the scale and scope of MPFs through a competition effect and a demand effect. We demonstrate how MPFs adjust in the presence of single-product firms and in heterogeneous industries. Our results are in line with recent empirical evidence and suggest that MPFs in conjunction with flexible manufacturing play an important role in the impact of international trade on product diversity.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number 292.

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Date of creation: 01 Nov 2006
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:292

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Keywords: Multi-Product Firms; Flexible Manufacturing; General Oligopolistic Equilibrium (GOLE); International Trade; Product Diversity;

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References

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  1. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2004. "Globalization and the Gains from Variety," NBER Working Papers 10314, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1990. "The Economics of Modern Manufacturing: Technology, Strategy, and Organization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 511-28, June.
  3. Eckel, Carsten, 2005. "International Trade, Flexible Manufacturing and Outsourcing," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 45, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
  4. Baldwin, Richard & Ottaviano, Gianmarco Ireo Paolo, 1998. "Multiproduct Multinationals and Reciprocal FDI Dumping," CEPR Discussion Papers 1851, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Carsten Eckel, 2009. "International trade, flexible manufacturing, and outsourcing," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 42(4), pages 1449-1472, November.
  6. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2006. "Multi-product firms and trade liberalization," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3684, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  7. John Baldwin & Wulong Gu, 2009. "The Impact of Trade on Plant Scale, Production-Run Length and Diversification," NBER Chapters, in: Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data, pages 557-592 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Eaton, B Curtis & Schmitt, Nicolas, 1994. "Flexible Manufacturing and Market Structure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 875-88, September.
  9. Allanson, Paul & Montagna, Catia, 2005. "Multiproduct firms and market structure: An explorative application to the product life cycle," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(7-8), pages 587-597, September.
  10. repec:fth:louvco:9919 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Brander, James A & Eaton, Jonathan, 1984. "Product Line Rivalry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 323-34, June.
  12. Norman, George & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 1999. "Technology Choice and Market Structure: Strategic Aspects of Flexible Manufacturing," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(3), pages 345-72, September.
  13. David P. Myatt & Justin P. Johnson, 2002. "Multiproduct Quality Competition: Fighting Brands and Product Line Pruning," Economics Series Working Papers 105, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  14. Jiandong Ju, 2003. "Oligopolistic Competition, Technology Innovation, and Multiproduct Firms," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(2), pages 346-359, 05.
  15. OTTAVIANO, Gianmarco & THISSE, Jacques-François, 1999. "Monopolistic competition, multiproduct firms and optimum product diversity," CORE Discussion Papers 1999019, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  16. David P. Myatt & Justin P. Johnson, 2005. "Multiproduct Cournot Oligopoly," Economics Series Working Papers 145, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  17. Volker Grossmann, 2003. "Firm Size and Diversification: Asymmetric Multiproduct Firms under Cournot Competition," CESifo Working Paper Series 1047, CESifo Group Munich.
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