Revealed Comparative Advantage and the Alternatives as Measures of International Specialisation
The paper is an analysis of Balassa’s ‘revealed comparative advantage’ (RCA). The papers shows that when using the RCA, it should always be adjusted in such a way, so that it becomes symmetric. The conclusion is based on a theoretical discussion of the properties of the measure, but also on convincing empirical evidence, based on the Jarque-Bera test of normality of the error terms from regressions, using both the RCA and the ‘Revealed Symmetric Comparative Advantage’ (the RSCA). The RSCA is also compared to other measures of international trade specialisation. These measures included the Michaely index and the chi square measure. The conclusion emerging from the analysis is that the RSCA is - on balance - the best measure of comparative
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- 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.
- Bent Dalum & Keld Laursen & Gert Villumsen, 1998. "Structural Change in OECD Export Specialisation Patterns: de-specialisation and 'stickiness'," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(3), pages 423-443.
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- Thomas Vollrath, 1991. "A theoretical evaluation of alternative trade intensity measures of revealed comparative advantage," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 127(2), pages 265-280, June.
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