IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/bir/birmec/10-08.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Sequential Exporting

Author

Listed:
  • Facundo Albornoz
  • Hector F. Calvo Pardo
  • Gregory Corcos
  • Emanuel Ornelas

Abstract

Firms need to incur substantial sunk costs to break in foreign markets, yet may give up exporting shortly after their first experience, which typically involves very small sales. Conversely, other new exporters shoot up their foreign sales and expand to new destinations. We investigate a simple theoretical mechanism that can rationalize these patterns. A firm discovers its profitability as an exporter only after actually engaging in exporting. The profitability is positively correlated over time and across foreign destinations. Accordingly, once the firm learns how good it is as an exporter, it adjusts quantities and decides whether to exit and whether to serve new destinations. Thus, it is the possibility of profitable expansion at both the intensive and extensive margins what makes incurring the sunk costs to enter a single foreign market worthwhile despite the high failure rates. Using a census of Argentinean firm-level manufacturing exports from 2002 to 2007, we find empirical support for several implications of our proposed mechanism, indicating that the practice of "sequential exporting" is pervasive. Sequential exporting has broad but subtle implications for trade policy. For example, a reduction in trade barriers in a country has delayed entry effects in its own market, while also promoting entry in other markets. This trade externality poses challenges for the quantification of the effects of trade liberalization programs, while suggesting neglected but critical implications of international trade agreements.

Suggested Citation

  • Facundo Albornoz & Hector F. Calvo Pardo & Gregory Corcos & Emanuel Ornelas, 2010. "Sequential Exporting," Discussion Papers 10-08, Department of Economics, University of Birmingham.
  • Handle: RePEc:bir:birmec:10-08
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: ftp://ftp.bham.ac.uk/pub/RePEc/pdf/10-08.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2007. "Firms in International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(3), pages 105-130, Summer.
    2. Martina Lawless, 2010. "Deconstructing gravity: trade costs and extensive and intensive margins," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 43(4), pages 1149-1172, November.
    3. Conconi, Paola & Sapir, André & Zanardi, Maurizio, 2016. "The internationalization process of firms: From exports to FDI," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 16-30.
    4. Araujo, Luis & Mion, Giordano & Ornelas, Emanuel, 2016. "Institutions and export dynamics," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 2-20.
    5. Kalina Manova, 2013. "Credit Constraints, Heterogeneous Firms, and International Trade," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(2), pages 711-744.
    6. Lawless, Martina, 2009. "Firm export dynamics and the geography of trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 245-254, April.
    7. Luis Araujo & Emanuel Ornelas, 2005. "Trust-Based Trade," IBMEC RJ Economics Discussion Papers 2005-08, Economics Research Group, IBMEC Business School - Rio de Janeiro.
    8. Thomas Chaney, 2014. "The Network Structure of International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(11), pages 3600-3634, November.
    9. Philippe Aghion & Patrick Bolton & Christopher Harris & Bruno Jullien, 1991. "Optimal Learning by Experimentation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(4), pages 621-654.
    10. Hector Calvo-Pardo, 2009. "Are the antiglobalists right? Gains-from-trade without a Walrasian auctioneer," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 38(3), pages 561-592, March.
    11. Albornoz, Facundo & Calvo Pardo, Héctor F. & Corcos, Gregory & Ornelas, Emanuel, 2012. "Sequential exporting," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 17-31.
    12. Stephen J. Redding, 2011. "Theories of Heterogeneous Firms and Trade," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 3(1), pages 77-105, September.
    13. Demidova, Svetlana & Kee, Hiau Looi & Krishna, Kala, 2012. "Do trade policy differences induce sorting? Theory and evidence from Bangladeshi apparel exporters," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 247-261.
    14. Giovanni Maggi & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 2007. "A Political-Economy Theory of Trade Agreements," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1374-1406, September.
    15. Robert W. Staiger & Kyle Bagwell, 1999. "An Economic Theory of GATT," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 215-248, March.
    16. Hiau Looi Kee & Kala Krishna, 2008. "Firm-Level Heterogeneous Productivity and Demand Shocks: Evidence from Bangladesh," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 457-462, May.
    17. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum & Francis Kramarz, 2011. "An Anatomy of International Trade: Evidence From French Firms," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(5), pages 1453-1498, September.
    18. 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.
    19. Martina Lawless, 2013. "Marginal Distance: Does Export Experience Reduce Firm Trade Costs?," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 24(5), pages 819-841, November.
    20. Kei-Mu Yi, 2003. "Can Vertical Specialization Explain the Growth of World Trade?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(1), pages 52-102, February.
    21. Krautheim, Sebastian, 2012. "Heterogeneous firms, exporter networks and the effect of distance on international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 27-35.
    22. Andrew K. Rose, 2004. "Do We Really Know That the WTO Increases Trade?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 98-114, March.
    23. Leonardo Iacovone & BeataS. Javorcik, 2010. "Multi-Product Exporters: Product Churning, Uncertainty and Export Discoveries," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(544), pages 481-499, May.
    24. Rauch, James E., 1999. "Networks versus markets in international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 7-35, June.
    25. Hausmann, Ricardo & Rodrik, Dani, 2003. "Economic development as self-discovery," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 603-633, December.
    26. Impullitti, Giammario & Irarrazabal, Alfonso A. & Opromolla, Luca David, 2013. "A theory of entry into and exit from export markets," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 75-90.
    27. Costas Arkolakis, 2016. "A Unified Theory of Firm Selection and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 131(1), pages 89-155.
    28. Rauch, James E. & Watson, Joel, 2003. "Starting small in an unfamiliar environment," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(7), pages 1021-1042, September.
    29. Buono, Ines & Fadinger, Harald & Berger, Stefan, 2008. "The Micro Dynamics of Exporting: Evidence from French Firms," MPRA Paper 12940, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    30. Josep M Vilarrubia & Rubén Segura-Cayuela, 2008. "Uncertainty and entry into export markets," 2008 Meeting Papers 661, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    31. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2009. "The Margins of US Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 487-493, May.
    32. repec:wly:iecrev:v:58:y:2017:i::p:703-726 is not listed on IDEAS
    33. Kim J. Ruhl & Jonathan L. Willis, 2017. "New Exporter Dynamics," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 58, pages 703-726, August.
    34. Joachim Wagner, 2007. "Exports and Productivity: A Survey of the Evidence from Firm-level Data," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(1), pages 60-82, January.
    35. Egger, Peter & Fahn, Matthias & Merlo, Valeria & Wamser, Georg, 2014. "On the genesis of multinational foreign affiliate networks," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 136-163.
    36. Tibor Besedes & Thomas Prusa, 2006. "Ins, outs, and the duration of trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 39(1), pages 266-295, February.
    37. Alfonso A. Irarrazabal & Luca David Opromolla, 2009. "The Cross Sectional Dynamics of Heterogenous Trade Models," Working Papers w200924, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    38. Alejandro Micco & Ernesto Stein & Guillermo Ordoñez, 2003. "The currency union effect on trade: early evidence from EMU," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 18(37), pages 315-356, October.
    39. Monika Mrazova, 2009. "Trade negotiations when market access matters," Economics Series Working Papers 447, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    40. Thierry Mayer & Gianmarco Ottaviano, 2008. "The Happy Few: The Internationalisation of European Firms," Intereconomics: Review of European Economic Policy, Springer;German National Library of Economics;Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS), vol. 43(3), pages 135-148, May.
    41. Alejandro Artopoulos & Daniel Friel & Juan Carlos Hallak, 2011. "Lifting the Domestic Veil: The Challenges of Exporting Differentiated Goods Across the Development Divide," NBER Working Papers 16947, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    42. Andrew Bernard & J Bradford Jensen & Stephen Redding & Peter Schott, 2009. "The Margins of U.S. Trade (Long Version)," Working Papers 09-18, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    43. Gianluca Benigno & Huigang Chen & Christopher Otrok & Alessandro Rebucci & Eric R. Young, 2011. "Revisiting Overborrowing and its Policy Implications," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Luis Felipe Céspedes & Roberto Chang & Diego Saravia (ed.), Monetary Policy under Financial Turbulence, edition 1, volume 16, chapter 6, pages 145-184 Central Bank of Chile.
    44. Ana Cristina Molina, 2010. "Are Preferential Agreements Stepping Stones To Other Markets?," IHEID Working Papers 13-2010, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
    45. Ping Lin & Kamal Saggi, 1999. "Incentives for Foreign Direct Investment under Imitation," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 32(5), pages 1275-1298, November.
    46. Sanghamitra Das & Mark J. Roberts & James R. Tybout, 2007. "Market Entry Costs, Producer Heterogeneity, and Export Dynamics," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(3), pages 837-873, May.
    47. repec:pse:psecon:2005-35 is not listed on IDEAS
    48. Lederman, Daniel & Olarreaga, Marcelo & Payton, Lucy, 2010. "Export promotion agencies: Do they work?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(2), pages 257-265, March.
    49. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1982. "Selection and the Evolution of Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(3), pages 649-670, May.
    50. Sebastian Krautheim, 2007. "Gravity and Information: Heterogeneous Firms, Exporter Networks and the 'Distance Puzzle'," Economics Working Papers ECO2007/51, European University Institute.
    51. Jan Johanson & Jan-Erik Vahlne, 1977. "The Internationalization Process of the Firm—A Model of Knowledge Development and Increasing Foreign Market Commitments," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 8(1), pages 23-32, March.
    52. Nguyen, Daniel X., 2012. "Demand uncertainty: Exporting delays and exporting failures," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 336-344.
    53. Morales, Eduardo & Sheu, Gloria & Zahler, Andrés, 2011. "Gravity and extended gravity: estimating a structural model of export entry," MPRA Paper 30311, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    54. Ornelas, Emanuel & Turner, John L., 2008. "Trade liberalization, outsourcing, and the hold-up problem," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 225-241, January.
    55. Freund, Caroline & Pierola, Martha Denisse, 2010. "Export entrepreneurs : evidence from Peru," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5407, The World Bank.
    56. Kent Eriksson & Jan Johanson & Anders Majkgård & D Deo Sharma, 1997. "Experimental Knowledge and Costs in the Internationalization Process," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 28(2), pages 337-360, June.
    57. Tibor Besedes & Thomas J. Prusa, 2003. "On the Duration of Trade," NBER Working Papers 9936, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Export dynamics; trade liberalisation; experimentation; uncertainty;

    JEL classification:

    • L21 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Business Objectives of the Firm
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:bir:birmec:10-08. 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: (Colin Rowat). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/debhauk.html .

    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.