A Simple and Flexible Dynamic Approach to Foreign Direct Investment Growth: The Canada-United States Relationship in the Context of Free Trade
This paper asks a simple question: Did Wilfred Laurier's dream of free trade with the United States, when it came to fruition in 1989, also impact on foreign direct investment (FDI) into Canada by US multinationals? This paper argues that the customary static econometric approach found in the FDI literature, along with the assumption that policy changes influence only the intercept term, are inadequate to address the question. Instead we introduce an innovative dynamic framework to support the testing of hypotheses on behavioural changes in the variables using a structural break framework. A key conclusion is that prior to signing the free trade agreement US FDI responded only to current growth in the Canadian economy, in a unitary fashion, and current exchange rate shifts. This can be described as a static relationship. The implementation of the free trade agreements between Canada and the USA increased the responsiveness of US FDI to growth in the Canadian economy by a factor greater than two. Furthermore, dynamics are found in the form of a lagged effect for changes in the growth in the Canadian economy and interest rate differentials. These conclusions challenge the dominant view, including that in official policy circles, that the free trade agreement had no impact on US firms' FDI decisions in Canada. Copyright 2007 The Authors Journal compilation 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd .
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Volume (Year): 30 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (02)
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