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

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  • Ehsan U. Choudhri
  • Lawrence L. Schembri

Abstract

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.

Suggested Citation

  • Ehsan U. Choudhri & Lawrence L. Schembri, 2010. "Productivity, the Terms of Trade, and the Real Exchange Rate: Balassa-Samuelson Hypothesis Revisited," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(5), pages 924-936, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:18:y:2010:i:5:p:924-936
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Ehsan U. Choudhri & Antonio Marasco, 2014. "Asymmetric Technological Change in the Melitz Model: Are Foreign Technological Improvements Harmful?," Carleton Economic Papers 14-04, Carleton University, Department of Economics.
    2. Bordo, Michael D. & Choudhri, Ehsan U. & Fazio, Giorgio & MacDonald, Ronald, 2017. "The real exchange rate in the long run: Balassa-Samuelson effects reconsidered," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, pages 69-92.
    3. repec:eee:ecosys:v:41:y:2017:i:2:p:297-304 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Choudhri, Ehsan U. & Schembri, Lawrence L., 2014. "Productivity, commodity prices and the real exchange rate: The long-run behavior of the Canada–US exchange rate," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, pages 537-551.
    5. Cardi, Olivier & Restout, Romain, 2015. "Imperfect mobility of labor across sectors: a reappraisal of the Balassa–Samuelson effect," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, pages 249-265.
    6. Matthias Gubler & Christoph Sax, 2012. "Skill-Biased Technological Change and the Real Exchange Rate," Working papers 2012/08, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
    7. Montecino, Juan Antonio, 2015. "Capital controls and the real exchange rate: Do controls promote disequilibria?," UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers 2015-02, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics.
    8. Handley, Kyle & Limão, Nuno, 2013. "Policy Uncertainty, Trade and Welfare: Theory and Evidence for China and the U.S," CEPR Discussion Papers 9615, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Njindan Iyke, Bernard, 2016. "The Penn Effect Revisited: New Evidence from Latin America," MPRA Paper 70593, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange

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