IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/spr/weltar/v154y2018i1d10.1007_s10290-017-0295-z.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Powerless: gains from trade when firm productivity is not Pareto distributed

Author

Listed:
  • Marco Bee

    () (University of Trento)

  • Stefano Schiavo

    () (University of Trento
    University of Trento
    OFCE-Sciences Po)

Abstract

Abstract Most trade models featuring heterogeneous firms assume a Pareto productivity distribution, on the basis that it provides a reasonable representation of the data and because of its analytical tractability. However, recent work shows that the characteristics of the productivity distribution crucially affect the estimated gains from trade. This paper thoroughly compares the gains from trade obtained under three different productivity distributions (Pareto, lognormal, and Weibull) and investigates their policy implications. We find that both the magnitude of the welfare gains and the relative importance of the fixed versus variable trade costs change significantly. Hence, relying blindly on a single distribution is dangerous when performing trade policy analysis.

Suggested Citation

  • Marco Bee & Stefano Schiavo, 2018. "Powerless: gains from trade when firm productivity is not Pareto distributed," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 154(1), pages 15-45, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:weltar:v:154:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s10290-017-0295-z
    DOI: 10.1007/s10290-017-0295-z
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://link.springer.com/10.1007/s10290-017-0295-z
    File Function: Abstract
    Download Restriction: Access to the full text of the articles in this series is restricted.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Monika Mr?zov? & J. Peter Neary, 2014. "Together at Last: Trade Costs, Demand Structure, and Welfare," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(5), pages 298-303, May.
    2. Melitz, Marc J. & Redding, Stephen J., 2013. "Firm heterogeneity and aggregate welfare," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 51533, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    3. Andrew B. Bernard & Jonathan Eaton & J. Bradford Jensen & Samuel Kortum, 2003. "Plants and Productivity in International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1268-1290, September.
    4. Thomas Chaney, 2008. "Distorted Gravity: The Intensive and Extensive Margins of International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1707-1721, September.
    5. Bellone, Flora & Kiyota, Kozo & Matsuura, Toshiyuki & Musso, Patrick & Nesta, Lionel, 2014. "International productivity gaps and the export status of firms: Evidence from France and Japan," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 70(C), pages 56-74.
    6. Behrens, Kristian & Kanemoto, Yoshitsugu & Murata, Yasusada, 2014. "New trade models, elusive welfare gains," CEPR Discussion Papers 10255, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2006. "Globalization and the Gains From Variety," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(2), pages 541-585.
    8. Kristian Behrens & Cem Ertur & Wilfried Koch, 2012. "‘Dual’ Gravity: Using Spatial Econometrics To Control For Multilateral Resistance," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(5), pages 773-794, August.
    9. Bas, Maria & Mayer, Thierry & Thoenig, Mathias, 2017. "From micro to macro: Demand, supply, and heterogeneity in the trade elasticity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 1-19.
    10. di Giovanni, Julian & Levchenko, Andrei A., 2013. "Firm entry, trade, and welfare in Zipf's world," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 283-296.
    11. Krugman, Paul, 1980. "Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 950-959, December.
    12. Marc J. Melitz & Stephen J. Redding, 2015. "New Trade Models, New Welfare Implications," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(3), pages 1105-1146, March.
    13. Flora Bellone & Patrick Musso & Lionel Nesta & Stefano Schiavo, 2010. "Financial Constraints and Firm Export Behaviour," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(3), pages 347-373, March.
    14. Pierre‐Philippe Combes & Gilles Duranton & Laurent Gobillon & Diego Puga & Sébastien Roux, 2012. "The Productivity Advantages of Large Cities: Distinguishing Agglomeration From Firm Selection," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 80(6), pages 2543-2594, November.
    15. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer & Mathias Thoenig, 2014. "Welfare and Trade without Pareto," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(5), pages 310-316, May.
    16. Holger Breinlich & Alejandro Cuñat, 2016. "Tariffs, Trade and Productivity: A Quantitative Evaluation of Heterogeneous Firm Models," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 126(595), pages 1660-1702, September.
    17. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2009. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(4), pages 1403-1448.
    18. repec:eee:phsmap:v:481:y:2017:i:c:p:265-275 is not listed on IDEAS
    19. Growiec, Jakub, 2013. "A microfoundation for normalized CES production functions with factor-augmenting technical change," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 2336-2350.
    20. Xavier Gabaix, 2009. "Power Laws in Economics and Finance," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 255-294, May.
    21. H. Hanson, Gordon, 2005. "Market potential, increasing returns and geographic concentration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 1-24, September.
    22. Esteban Rossi-Hansberg & Mark L. J. Wright, 2007. "Establishment Size Dynamics in the Aggregate Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1639-1666, December.
    23. Eric Bartelsman & John Haltiwanger & Stefano Scarpetta, 2013. "Cross-Country Differences in Productivity: The Role of Allocation and Selection," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(1), pages 305-334, February.
    24. Cernat, Lucian, 2014. "Towards "trade policy analysis 2.0": From national comparative advantage to firm-level trade data," DG TRADE Chief Economist Notes 2014-4, Directorate General for Trade, European Commission.
    25. repec:hrv:faseco:34299161 is not listed on IDEAS
    26. Gabriel Felbermayr & Mario Larch, 2013. "The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP): Potentials, Problems and Perspectives," CESifo Forum, Ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 14(2), pages 49-60, August.
    27. Chad Syverson, 2004. "Product Substitutability and Productivity Dispersion," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(2), pages 534-550, May.
    28. Marc J. Melitz, 2003. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(6), pages 1695-1725, November.
    29. Costas Arkolakis & Arnaud Costinot & Andres Rodriguez-Clare, 2012. "New Trade Models, Same Old Gains?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 94-130, February.
    30. David Greenaway & Richard Kneller, 2007. "Firm heterogeneity, exporting and foreign direct investment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(517), pages 134-161, February.
    31. Minetti, Raoul & Zhu, Susan Chun, 2011. "Credit constraints and firm export: Microeconomic evidence from Italy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 109-125, March.
    32. Bee, Marco & Riccaboni, Massimo & Schiavo, Stefano, 2017. "Where Gibrat meets Zipf: Scale and scope of French firms," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 481(C), pages 265-275.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Bawa, Siraj, 2017. "Corporate Taxation in the Open Economy without Pareto," MPRA Paper 80857, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Aug 2017.
    2. Anders Rosenstand Laugesen, 2015. "Asymmetric Monotone Comparative Statics for the Industry Compositions," Economics Working Papers 2015-22, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    3. Mr�zov�, Monika & Neary, J Peter & Parenti, Mathieu, 2017. "Sales and Markup Dispersion: Theory and Empirics," CEPR Discussion Papers 12044, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Demian, Calin-Vlad & di Mauro, Filippo, 2018. "The exchange rate, asymmetric shocks and asymmetric distributions," International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 154(C), pages 68-85.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Lognormal; Pareto; Weibull; International trade; Welfare; Firm heterogeneity;

    JEL classification:

    • C46 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Specific Distributions
    • C52 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Model Evaluation, Validation, and Selection
    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:spr:weltar:v:154:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s10290-017-0295-z. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.