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Buyer investment, export variety, and intrafirm trade

  • Chen, Yongmin
  • Feenstra, Robert C.

This paper studies a model of buyer investment and its effect on the variety and vertical structure of international trade. A distinction is made between two types of buyer investment: "Flexible" and "specific", which differ in the ability of a buyer to match with a seller. The interaction of buyer investment with the entry and pricing incentives of suppliers are analyzed. It is shown that (i) there can be multiple equilibria in the variety of products traded, and (ii) less product variety is associated with more intrafirm trade. The possibility of multiple equilibria is consistent with the observation that some similar economies, such as Taiwan and South Korea, differ substantially in their export varieties to the U.S. A cross-country empirical analysis confirms the negative correlation between export variety and intrafirm trade.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 52 (2008)
Issue (Month): 8 (November)
Pages: 1313-1337

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:52:y:2008:i:8:p:1313-1337
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eer

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  1. Christian Broda & David Weinstein, 2004. "Globalization and the gains from variety," Staff Reports 180, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. James E. Rauch & Joel Watson, 2004. "Network Intermediaries in International Trade," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(1), pages 69-93, 03.
  3. Pol Antràs, 2003. "Firms, Contracts, and Trade Structure," NBER Working Papers 9740, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Robert C. Feenstra & James R. Markusen & Andrew K. Rose, 2001. "Using the gravity equation to differentiate among alternative theories of trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 34(2), pages 430-447, May.
  5. Oliver Hart & Sanford Grossman, 1985. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Working papers 372, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  6. Pol Antras & Elhanan Helpman, 2004. "Global Sourcing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(3), pages 552-580, June.
  7. Feenstra, Robert C, 1994. "New Product Varieties and the Measurement of International Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 157-77, March.
  8. Feenstra, Robert C. & Yang, Tzu-Han & Hamilton, Gary G., 1999. "Business groups and product variety in trade: evidence from South Korea, Taiwan and Japan," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 71-100, June.
  9. William J. Zeile, 2003. "Trade in Goods Within Multinational Companies: Survey-Based Data and Findings for the United States of America," BEA Papers 0033, Bureau of Economic Analysis.
  10. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker Than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116, February.
  11. Feenstra, Robert & Kee, Hiau Looi, 2008. "Export variety and country productivity: Estimating the monopolistic competition model with endogenous productivity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 500-518, March.
  12. Yongmin Chen, 2006. "Marketing Innovation," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 101-123, 03.
  13. repec:hrv:faseco:4784029 is not listed on IDEAS
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