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The Mercantilist Index of Trade Policy

  • Anderson, James E
  • Neary, J Peter

This paper develops and characterizes an index of trade policy restrictiveness defined as the uniform tariff equivalent which maintains the same volume of trade as a given set of tariffs, quotas, and domestic taxes and subsidies. We relate this volume-equivalent index to the Trade Restrictiveness Index, a welfare-equivalent measure, and relate changes in both indexes to changes in the generalized mean and variance of the tariff schedule. Applications to international cross-section and time-series comparisons of trade policy show that the new index frequently gives a very different picture than do standard indexes.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2044.

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Date of creation: Dec 1998
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2044
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  1. Anderson, James E & Neary, J Peter, 1996. "A New Approach to Evaluating Trade Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(1), pages 107-25, January.
  2. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1994. "Technology and Trade," NBER Working Papers 4926, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Bagwell,K. & Staiger,R.W., 1998. "An economic theory of GATT," Working papers 15, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  4. Neary, J. P., 1997. "Pitfalls in the Theory of International Trade Policy: Concertina Reforms of Tariffs, and Subsidies to High-Technology Industries," Papers 97/26, College Dublin, Department of Political Economy-.
  5. James E. Anderson & J. Peter Neary, 1992. "Domestic distortions and international trade," Working Papers 199217, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  6. Anderson, James E & Neary, J Peter, 1998. "The Mercantilist Index of Trade Policy," CEPR Discussion Papers 2044, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Anderson, James E & Neary, J Peter, 1992. "Trade Reform with Quotas, Partial Rent Retention, and Tariffs," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(1), pages 57-76, January.
  8. Neary, J Peter & Schweinberger, Albert G, 1986. "Factor Content Functions and the Theory of International Trade," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(3), pages 421-32, July.
  9. Aw, Bee Yan & Roberts, Mark J., 1986. "Measuring quality change in quota-constrained import markets: The Case of U.S. Footwear," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1-2), pages 45-60, August.
  10. Feenstra, R.C., 1995. "Estimating the Effects of Trade Policy," Papers 95-10, California Davis - Institute of Governmental Affairs.
  11. 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.
  12. James Anderson, 1995. "Trade Restrictiveness Benchmarks," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 290., Boston College Department of Economics.
  13. Michael D. Bordo & Barry Eichengreen & Douglas A. Irwin, 1999. "Is Globalization Today Really Different than Globalization a Hunderd Years Ago?," NBER Working Papers 7195, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. James E. Anderson, 1993. "Tariff Index Theory," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 215, Boston College Department of Economics.
  15. Kevin H. O'Rourke, 1994. "Measuring protection : a cautionary tale," Working Papers 199423, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  16. J. P. Neary (ed.), 1995. "International Trade," Books, Edward Elgar, volume 0, number 575, April.
  17. Pritchett, Lant, 1996. "Measuring outward orientation in LDCs: Can it be done?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 307-335, May.
  18. Hatta, Tatsuo, 1977. "A Theory of Piecemeal Policy Recommendations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(1), pages 1-21, February.
  19. Randi Boorstein & Robert C. Feenstra, 1987. "Quality Upgrading and its Welfare Cost in U.S. Steel Imports, 1969-74," NBER Working Papers 2452, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Pritchett, Lant & Sethi, Geeta, 1993. "Tariff rates, tariff revenue, and tariff reform : some new facts," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1143, The World Bank.
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