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Trade Costs, Trade Balances and Current Accounts: An Application of Gravity to Multilateral Trade

  • Giorgio Fazio


  • Ronald MacDonald


  • Jacques Melitz


In this paper we test the well-known hypothesis of Obstfeld and Rogoff (2000) that trade costs are the key to explaining the so-called Feldstein-Horioka puzzle. Using a gravity framework in an intertemporal context, we provide strong support for the hypothesis and we reconcile our results with the so-called home bias puzzle. Interestingly, this requires fundamental revision of Obstfeld and Rogoff’s argument. A further novelty of our work is in tying bilateral trade behaviour to desired aggregate trade balances and desired intertemporal trade.

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Article provided by Springer in its journal Open Economies Review.

Volume (Year): 19 (2008)
Issue (Month): 5 (November)
Pages: 557-578

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Handle: RePEc:kap:openec:v:19:y:2008:i:5:p:557-578
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