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Productivity Improvements And Falling Trade Costs: Boon Or Bane?

  • Svetlana Demidova

This article looks at two features of globalization, namely, productivity improvements and falling trade costs, and explores their effect on welfare in a monopolistic competition model with heterogenous firms and technological asymmetries. Contrary to received wisdom, and for reasons different from adverse terms of trade effects, it is shown that improvements in a partner's productivity must hurt us. Moreover, falling trade costs can raise welfare in the technologically advanced country while reducing it in the backward one, if technological asymmetries are large enough. Copyright � (2008) by the Economics Department of the University of Pennsylvania and the Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association.

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Article provided by Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association in its journal International Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 49 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 1437-1462

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Handle: RePEc:ier:iecrev:v:49:y:2008:i:4:p:1437-1462
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  1. Elhanan Helpman & Marc J. Melitz & Stephen R. Yeaple, 2003. "Export versus FDI," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1998, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  2. Marc J. Melitz & Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano, 2005. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," Development Working Papers 201, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
  3. R. Dornbusch & S. Fischer & P. A. Samuelson, 1976. "Comparative Advantage, Trade and Payments in a Ricardian Model With a Continuum of Goods," Working papers 178, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Fabio Ghironi & Marc J. Melitz, 2004. "International Trade and Macroeconomic Dynamics with Heterogeneous Firms," NBER Working Papers 10540, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Andrew Bernard & Stephen Redding & Peter Schott, 2004. "Comparative advantage and heterogeneous firms," IFS Working Papers W04/24, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  6. Richard E. Baldwin & Rikard Forslid, 2006. "Trade Liberalization with Heterogenous Firms," NBER Working Papers 12192, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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