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An Evaluation of the Performance of Applied General Equilibrium Models of the Impact of NAFTA

  • Timothy J. Kehoe

This paper evaluates the performances of three of the most prominent multisectoral static applied general equilibrium models used to predict the impact of the North American Free Trade Agreement. These models drastically underestimated the impact of NAFTA on North American trade. Furthermore, the models failed to capture much of the relative impacts on different sectors. Ex-post performance evaluations of applied GE models are essential if policymakers are to have confidence in the results produced by these models. Such valuations also help make applied GE analysis a scientific discipline in which there are well-defined puzzles with clear successes and failures for competing theories. Analyzing sectoral trade data indicates the need for a new theoretical mechanism that generates large increases in trade in product categories with little or no previous trade. To capture changes in macroeconomic aggregates, the models need to be able to capture changes in productivity.

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Date of creation: 14 Mar 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cla:levarc:506439000000000525
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  1. Timothy J. Kehoe & Kim J. Ruhl, 2006. "How Important is the New Goods Margin in International Trade?," 2006 Meeting Papers 733, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Krugman, Paul R., 1979. "Increasing returns, monopolistic competition, and international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 469-479, November.
  3. Daniel Trefler, 2006. "The long and short of the Canada-U.S. free trade agreement," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6721, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  4. Kehoe, Timothy J. & Noyola, Pedro Javier & Manresa, Antonio & Polo, Clemente & Sancho, Ferran, 1988. "A general equilibrium analysis of the 1986 tax reform in Spain," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 334-342, March.
  5. Harris, Richard, 1984. "Applied General Equilibrium Analysis of Small Open Economies with Scale Economies and Imperfect Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(5), pages 1016-32, December.
  6. R. Dornbusch & S. Fischer & P. A. Samuelson, 1976. "Comparative Advantage, Trade and Payments in a Ricardian Model With a Continuum of Goods," Working papers 178, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  7. Cox, David & Harris, Richard, 1985. "Trade Liberalization and Industrial Organization: Some Estimates for Canada," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(1), pages 115-45, February.
  8. Kehoe, Timothy J & Polo, Clemente & Sancho, Ferran, 1995. "An Evaluation of the Performance of an Applied General Equilibrium Model of the Spanish Economy," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 6(1), pages 115-41, June.
  9. Brown, D.K. & Stern, R.M., 1988. "Computable General Equilibrium Estimates Of The Gains From U.S.-Canadian Trade Liberalization," Working Papers 220, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  10. Timothy J. Kehoe & Edward C. Prescott(), 2007. "Great depressions of the twentieth century," Monograph, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, number 2007gdott.
  11. Timothy J. Kehoe, 1992. "Modeling the dynamic impact of North American free trade," Working Papers 491, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  12. Raphael Bergoeing & Timothy J. Kehoe, 2001. "Trade theory and trade facts," Staff Report 284, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  13. de Cordoba, Gonzalo Fernandez & Kehoe, Timothy J., 2000. "Capital flows and real exchange rate fluctuations following Spain's entry into the European Community," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 49-78, June.
  14. Brown, D.K. & Deardorff, A.V. & Stern, R.M., 1991. "Some Estimates of a North American Free Trade Agreement," Working Papers 288, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  15. Mary E. Burfisher & Sherman Robinson & Karen Thierfelder, 2001. "The Impact of NAFTA on the United States," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 125-144, Winter.
  16. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 64, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  17. Brown, D.K., 1993. "Properties of Applied General Equilibrium Trade Models with Monopolistic Competition and Foreign Direct Investment," Working Papers 321, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  18. John B. Shoven & John Whalley, 1973. "General Equilibrium with Taxes: A Computational Procedure and an Existence Proof," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 40(4), pages 475-489.
  19. Adams, Philip D. & Dixon, Peter B. & McDonald, Daina & Meagher, G. A. & Parmenter, Brian R., 1994. "Forecasts for the Australian economy using the MONASH model," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 557-571, December.
  20. Drusilla K. Brown & Alan V. Deardorff & Robert M. Stern, 1992. "A North American Free Trade Agreement: Analytical Issues and a Computational Assessment," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 11-30, 01.
  21. Timothy Kehoe & Edward Prescott, 2002. "Data Appendix to Great Depressions of the Twentieth Century," Technical Appendices kehoe02, Review of Economic Dynamics.
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