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Productivity, the Terms of Trade, and the Real Exchange Rate: Balassa-Samuelson Hypothesis Revisited

Listed author(s):
  • Ehsan U. Choudhri
  • Lawrence L. Schembri

The paper examines how the Balassa-Samuelson hypothesis is affected by a modern variation of the standard model that allows product differentiation (within the traded and nontraded goods sectors) with the number of firms determined exogenously or endogenously. The hypothesis is found to be fragile in the modified framework. Small variations in the elasticity of substitution between home and foreign traded goods (within the range of estimates suggested in the literature), for example, can make the effect of a traded-goods productivity improvement on the real exchange rate negative or positive, as well as small or large. This result provides a potential explanation of the mixed empirical results that have been obtained on the relationship between productivity and the real exchange rate. Copyright © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of International Economics.

Volume (Year): 18 (2010)
Issue (Month): 5 (November)
Pages: 924-936

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Handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:18:y:2010:i:5:p:924-936
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  1. Ehsan U. Choudhri & Mohsin S. Khan, 2005. "Real Exchange Rates in Developing Countries: Are Balassa-Samuelson Effects Present?," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 52(3), pages 1-2.
  2. Giancarlo Corsetti & Luca Dedola & Sylvain Leduc, 2008. "International Risk Sharing and the Transmission of Productivity Shocks," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(2), pages 443-473.
  3. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Martin, Philippe & Pesenti, Paolo, 2007. "Productivity, terms of trade and the `home market effect'," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 99-127, September.
  4. Giancarlo Corsetti & Luca Dedola & Sylvain Leduc, 2008. "Productivity, External Balance, and Exchange Rates: Evidence on the Transmission Mechanism among G7 Countries," NBER Chapters,in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2006, pages 117-194 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Fabio Ghironi & Marc J. Melitz, 2005. "International Trade and Macroeconomic Dynamics with Heterogeneous Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 865-915.
  6. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Martin, Philippe & Pesenti, Paolo, 2008. "Varieties and the Transfer Problem: the Extensive Margin of Current Account Adjustment," CEPR Discussion Papers 6660, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Charles Engel, 1999. "Accounting for U.S. Real Exchange Rate Changes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 507-538, June.
  8. Bergin, Paul R. & Glick, Reuven & Taylor, Alan M., 2006. "Productivity, tradability, and the long-run price puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(8), pages 2041-2066, November.
  9. Luca Antonio Ricci & Gian Maria Milesi‐Ferretti & Jaewoo Lee, 2013. "Real Exchange Rates and Fundamentals: A Cross‐Country Perspective," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 45(5), pages 845-865, August.
  10. Kenneth Rogoff, 1996. "The Purchasing Power Parity Puzzle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 647-668, June.
  11. Thomas Lubik & Frank Schorfheide, 2005. "A Bayesian Look at New Open Economy Macroeconomics," Economics Working Paper Archive 521, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  12. Bela Balassa, 1964. "The Purchasing-Power Parity Doctrine: A Reappraisal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 72, pages 584-584.
  13. Hertel, Thomas & Hummels, David & Ivanic, Maros & Keeney, Roman, 2007. "How confident can we be of CGE-based assessments of Free Trade Agreements?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 611-635, July.
  14. Canzoneri, Matthew B. & Cumby, Robert E. & Diba, Behzad, 1999. "Relative labor productivity and the real exchange rate in the long run: evidence for a panel of OECD countries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 245-266, April.
  15. Krugman, Paul, 1980. "Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 950-959, December.
  16. Jaewoo Lee & Man-Keung Tang, 2007. "Does Productivity Growth Appreciate the Real Exchange Rate?," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 164-187, February.
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