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Trade in Business Services in General Equilibrium

  • Markusen, James R.
  • Strand, Bridget

Trade in business services has been attracting attention from academic researchers, policy makers, and business journalists. While there are many anecdotes, there has been little in the way of formal theory applied to this issue. In this paper, we adapt a general model of fragmentation of production activities to try to capture the specific features of business services. Following a general discussion, we calibrate a numerical general-equilibrium simulation model to a situation in which both trade and foreign investment in services are initially banned to technically infeasible. We then compute three counter-factual scenarios: one in which trade but not investment in services is feasible or allowed, one in which investment but not trade is allowed, and one in which both trade and investment in services are allowed.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 6080.

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Date of creation: Feb 2007
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6080
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  1. James Markusen & Thomas Rutherford & David Tarr, 2005. "Trade and direct investment in producer services and the domestic market for expertise," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 38(3), pages 758-777, August.
  2. Markusen, James R., 2002. "Multinational Firms and the Theory of International Trade," MPRA Paper 8380, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Venables, Anthony J, 1996. "Equilibrium Locations of Vertically Linked Industries," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 37(2), pages 341-59, May.
  4. Ethier, Wilfred J, 1982. "National and International Returns to Scale in the Modern Theory of International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(3), pages 389-405, June.
  5. Joseph F. Francois, 1990. "Trade in Producer Services and Returns Due to Specialization under Monopolistic Competition," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 23(1), pages 109-24, February.
  6. Jones, Ronald W. & Coelho, Isaias & Easton, Stephen T., 1986. "The theory of international factor flows: The basic model," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(3-4), pages 313-327, May.
  7. Hoekman, Bernard, 2006. "Liberalizing trade in services : a survey," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4030, The World Bank.
  8. Markusen, James R., 1990. "Derationalizing tariffs with specialized intermediate inputs and differentiated final goods," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3-4), pages 375-383, May.
  9. James R. Markusen & Anthony J. Venables, 2005. "A Multi-Country Approach to Factor-Proportions Trade and Trade Costs," NBER Working Papers 11051, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Hummels, David & Ishii, Jun & Yi, Kei-Mu, 2001. "The nature and growth of vertical specialization in world trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 75-96, June.
  11. J.P. Neary, 1995. "Factor Mobility and International Trade," CEP Discussion Papers dp0248, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  12. Francois, Joseph F, 1990. "Producer Services, Scale, and the Division of Labor," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(4), pages 715-29, October.
  13. Markusen, James R., 1984. "Multinationals, multi-plant economies, and the gains from trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3-4), pages 205-226, May.
  14. Zhang, Kevin Honglin & Markusen, James R., 1999. "Vertical multinationals and host-country characteristics," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 233-252, August.
  15. Deardorff, A.V., 1998. "Fragmentation in Simple Trade Models," Working Papers 422, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  16. Norman, Victor D & Venables, Anthony J, 1995. "International Trade, Factor Mobility and Trade Costs," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(433), pages 1488-1504, November.
  17. Feenstra, Robert C. & Hanson, Gordon H., 1997. "Foreign direct investment and relative wages: Evidence from Mexico's maquiladoras," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 371-393, May.
  18. Pol Antràs, 2003. "Firms, Contracts, and Trade Structure," NBER Working Papers 9740, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Markusen, James R., 1983. "Factor movements and commodity trade as complements," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3-4), pages 341-356, May.
  20. Jagdish Bhagwati & Arvind Panagariya, 2004. "The Muddles over Outsourcing," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 93-114, Fall.
  21. Robert C. Feenstra & Gordon H. Hanson, 1996. "Globalization, Outsourcing, and Wage Inequality," NBER Working Papers 5424, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Markusen, James R, 1989. "Trade in Producer Services and in Other Specialized Intermediate Inputs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 85-95, March.
  23. 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.
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