IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Endogenous Borders? The Effects of New Borders on Trade in Central Europe 1885-1933

  • Hans-Christian Heinemeyer
  • Max-Stephan Schulze
  • Nikolaus Wolf

A large literature on “border effects” in the wake of McCallum (1995) documents the massive impact of borders on trade. However, all these studies suffer from an identification problem. “Border effects” are usually identified from cross-sectional variation alone. We do not know how trade would change in response to a change in borders – the “treatment effect” of borders on trade – simply because trade flows across “future” borders are typically not documented. Nor can we rule out that there is “reverse causation”: that borders run along pre-existing trade patterns rather than shape trade flows. We exploit a natural experiment from history to explore this issue: the many dramatic border changes that were imposed and codified by the peace treaties in 1919 across Europe. We follow Ritschl and Wolf (2008) and implement Ashenfelter’s difference-in-difference estimator in levels on a large, new data set on sub-national trade flows. This allows us to trace the effects of changing borders over time and produces two key results: first, new borders have a large effect on trade. However second, the “treatment effects” of borders tend to be significantly smaller than the pure cross-sectional effects. This is so, because most of the 1919 border changes followed a pattern of trade relations across the region that was clearly visible already before 1914. Borders shape trade, and trade shapes borders.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2008/wp-cesifo-2008-03/cesifo1_wp2246.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2246.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2246
Contact details of provider: Postal: Poschingerstrasse 5, 81679 Munich
Phone: +49 (89) 9224-0
Fax: +49 (89) 985369
Web page: http://www.cesifo.de
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. James E. Rauch & Vitor Trindade, 1999. "Ethnic Chinese Networks in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 7189, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2003. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 170-192, March.
  3. Carolyn Evans, 2006. "Border effects and the availability of domestic products abroad," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 39(1), pages 211-246, February.
  4. McCallum, John, 1995. "National Borders Matter: Canada-U.S. Regional Trade Patterns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 615-23, June.
  5. Joao Santos Silva & Silvana Tenreyro, 2005. "The Log of Gravity," CEP Discussion Papers dp0701, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  6. Nitsch, Volker & Wolf, Nikolaus, 2009. "Tear Down this Wall : On the Persistence of Borders in Trade," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 919, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  7. Orley Ashenfelter & David Card, 1984. "Using the Longitudinal Structure of Earnings to Estimate the Effect of Training Programs," NBER Working Papers 1489, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Carolyn L. Evans, 2003. "The Economic Significance of National Border Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1291-1312, September.
  9. Russell Hillberry & David Hummels, 2005. "Trade Responses to Geographic Frictions: A Decomposition Using Micro-Data," NBER Working Papers 11339, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. James E. Rauch, 2001. "Business and Social Networks in International Trade," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1177-1203, December.
  11. Greif, Avner, 1993. "Contract Enforceability and Economic Institutions in Early Trade: the Maghribi Traders' Coalition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 525-48, June.
  12. Ashenfelter, Orley C, 1978. "Estimating the Effect of Training Programs on Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(1), pages 47-57, February.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:

  1. Historical Economic Geography

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2246. 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: (Julio Saavedra)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.