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Exploring the Intensive and Extensive Margins of World Trade

  • Gabriel J. Felbermayr
  • Wilhelm Kohler

World trade evolves at two margins. Where a bilateral trading relationship already exists it may increase through time (intensive margin). But trade may also increase if a trading bilateral relationship is newly established between countries that have not traded with each other in the past (extensive margin). We provide an empirical dissection of post-World-War-II growth in manufacturing world trade along these two margins. We propose a “corner-solutions-version” of the gravity model to explain movements on both margins. A Tobit estimation of this model resolves the so-called “distance-puzzle”. It also finds more convincing evidence than recent literature that WTO-membership enhances trade.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1276.

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Date of creation: 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1276
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  1. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2004. "Trade Costs," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(3), pages 691-751, September.
  2. Kristian Skrede Gleditsch, 2002. "Expanded Trade and GDP Data," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 46(5), pages 712-724, October.
  3. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter K. Schott, 2003. "Falling Trade Costs, Heterogeneous Firms, and Industry Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 9639, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Barry Eichengreen & Douglas A. Irwin, 1996. "The Role of History in Bilateral Trade Flows," NBER Working Papers 5565, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Subramanian, Arvind & Wei, Shang-Jin, 2005. "The WTO Promotes Trade, Strongly But Unevenly," CEPR Discussion Papers 5122, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Jean-François Brun & Céline Carrère & Patrick Guillaumont & Jaime de Melo, 2015. "Has Distance Died? Evidence from a Panel Gravity Model," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Developing Countries in the World Economy, chapter 13, pages 299-320 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
  7. Claudia M. Buch & Jörn Kleinert & Farid Toubal, 2003. "The Distance Puzzle: On the Interpretation of the Distance Coefficient in Gravity Equations," Kiel Working Papers 1159, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  8. Alan V. Deardorff, 1995. "Determinants of Bilateral Trade: Does Gravity Work in a Neoclassical World?," NBER Working Papers 5377, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Peter Egger & Michael Pfaffermayr, 2004. "Distance, trade and FDI: a Hausman-Taylor SUR approach," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(2), pages 227-246.
  10. Rose, Andrew K, 2002. "Do We Really Know that the WTO Increases Trade?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3538, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Romain Wacziarg & Karen Horn Welch, 2008. "Trade Liberalization and Growth: New Evidence," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 22(2), pages 187-231, June.
  12. Evenett, S. J. & Keller, W., 1994. "On Theories Explaining the Success of the Gravity Equation," Working papers 9713, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  13. Edward E. Leamer & James Levinsohn, 1994. "International Trade Theory: The Evidence," NBER Working Papers 4940, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1997. "Regional Trading Blocs in the World Economic System," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 72.
  15. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2001. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 8079, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Rozanski, Jerzy & Yeats, Alexander, 1994. "On the (in)accuracy of economic observations: An assessment of trends in the reliability of international trade statistics," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 103-130, June.
  17. Robert C. Feenstra & James R. Markusen & Andrew K. Rose, 2001. "Using the gravity equation to differentiate among alternative theories of trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 34(2), pages 430-447, May.
  18. Rikhil Bhavnani & Natalia T. Tamirisa & Arvind Subramanian & David T. Coe, 2002. "The Missing Globalization Puzzle," IMF Working Papers 02/171, International Monetary Fund.
  19. Trefler, Daniel, 1995. "The Case of the Missing Trade and Other Mysteries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1029-46, December.
  20. Elhanan Helpman & Marc Melitz & Yona Rubinstein, 2006. "Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," DEGIT Conference Papers c011_022, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
  21. Alan V. Deardorff, 2014. "Local comparative advantage: Trade costs and the pattern of trade," International Journal of Economic Theory, The International Society for Economic Theory, vol. 10(1), pages 9-35, 03.
  22. J. M. C. Santos Silva & Silvana Tenreyro, 2003. "Gravity-defying trade," Working Papers 03-1, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  23. Anderson, James E, 1979. "A Theoretical Foundation for the Gravity Equation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(1), pages 106-16, March.
  24. repec:rus:hseeco:123558 is not listed on IDEAS
  25. Baier, Scott L. & Bergstrand, Jeffrey H., 2001. "The growth of world trade: tariffs, transport costs, and income similarity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 1-27, February.
  26. Douglas A. Irwin & Marko Tervio, 2000. "Does Trade Raise Income? Evidence from the Twentieth Century," NBER Working Papers 7745, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. Markusen, James R., 2002. "Multinational Firms and the Theory of International Trade," MPRA Paper 8380, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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