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Measures Of International Relative Prices For China And The Usa

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  • Charles P. Thomas
  • Jaime Marquez
  • Sean Fahle

Abstract

Abstract. In this paper we assemble a measure of international relative prices to gauge the average amount by which prices in China and the USA differ from the prices of their trading partners. Our estimated weighted average of relative prices for China and the USA are the first to use the significantly revised purchasing power parities embodied in the price data from the World Bank's World Development Indicators. Our analysis reveals several findings of interest. First, interactions between the structure of trade and the levels of relative prices are sufficiently important to induce divergences between the weighted average of relative prices and conventional real effective exchange‐rate indexes. Second, revisions embodied in World Development Indicators price data generally lower the estimate of US international relative prices. Third, net exports are inversely related to the estimate of US international relative price, but, for China, the correlation is positive. Estimating this correlation for other countries reveals no systematic pattern related to the level of development alone. Fourth, unlike previous work, using our price measures we find that an increase in US prices relative to Chinese prices raises the share of China's exports to the USA. Finally, there is a distinct possibility of eliminating the long‐standing differential in income elasticities of US trade in empirical applications.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles P. Thomas & Jaime Marquez & Sean Fahle, 2009. "Measures Of International Relative Prices For China And The Usa," Pacific Economic Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(3), pages 376-397, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:pacecr:v:14:y:2009:i:3:p:376-397
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-0106.2009.00456.x
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0106.2009.00456.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Menzie Chinn, 2006. "A Primer on Real Effective Exchange Rates: Determinants, Overvaluation, Trade Flows and Competitive Devaluation," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 115-143, January.
    2. Feenstra, Robert C, 1994. "New Product Varieties and the Measurement of International Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 157-177, March.
    3. Thorbecke Willem, 2006. "How Would an Appreciation of the Renminbi Affect the U.S. Trade Deficit with China?," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 6(3), pages 1-17, December.
    4. Krugman, Paul, 1989. "Differences in income elasticities and trends in real exchange rates," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 1031-1046, May.
    5. Michael P. Leahy, 1998. "New summary measures of the foreign exchange value of the dollar," Federal Reserve Bulletin, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), issue oct, pages 811-818.
    6. Robert Summers & Alan Heston, 1991. "The Penn World Table (Mark 5): An Expanded Set of International Comparisons, 1950–1988," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 327-368.
    7. Houthakker, Hendrik S & Magee, Stephen P, 1969. "Income and Price Elasticities in World Trade," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 51(2), pages 111-125, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ronald A. Ratti & Joaquin L. Vespignani & Wensheng Kang, 2016. "The implications of liquidity expansion in China for the US dollar," Globalization Institute Working Papers 264, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, revised 01 Jan 2016.
    2. Fischer, Christoph & Hossfeld, Oliver, 2014. "A consistent set of multilateral productivity approach-based indicators of price competitiveness," Discussion Papers 10/2014, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    3. Fischer, Christoph & Hossfeld, Oliver, 2014. "A consistent set of multilateral productivity approach-based indicators of price competitiveness – Results for Pacific Rim economies," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 49(PA), pages 152-169.
    4. Kurdin, Alexander (Курдин, Александр), 2017. "Regulation of Enterprise Prices: Application Areas, Mechanisms and Methods of Regulation, Impact on Competition (Case Study of Gas Industry)
      [Регулирование Цен Предприятий: Области Применения, Меха
      ," Working Papers 031703, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.
    5. Willem Thorbecke, 2013. "Investigating China's Disaggregated Processed Exports: Evidence that Both the RMB and Exchange Rates in Supply Chain Countries Matter," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(10), pages 1245-1260, October.

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