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The Determinants of Intra-Firm Trade

  • Corcos, Gregory
  • Irac, Delphine
  • Mion, Giordano
  • Verdier, Thierry

How successful is the theory of the firm in explaining intra-firm trade? To answer this question we exploit a unique dataset of 1,141,393 French import transactions, spanning across firm, countries and products in 1999, and reporting whether a transaction is intra-firm. Overall, we find support for the main predictions of the partial equilibrium property-rights approach and further deliver facts that can be useful for further theoretical development. We document substantial within-industry heterogeneity while providing evidence of the importance of the firm dimension of sourcing choices as well as of the key distinction between the extensive and intensive margins.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7530.

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Date of creation: Nov 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7530
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  1. Nathan Nunn, 2007. "Relationship-Specificity, Incomplete Contracts, and the Pattern of Trade," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 569-600, 05.
  2. Pol Antràs & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2009. "Organizations and Trade," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 43-64, 05.
  3. Elhanan Helpman & Marc Melitz & Yona Rubinstein, 2007. "Estimating Trade Flows: Trading Partners and Trading Volumes," NBER Working Papers 12927, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Tomiura, Eiichi, 2007. "Foreign outsourcing, exporting, and FDI: A productivity comparison at the firm level," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 113-127, May.
  5. Juan Carluccio & Thibault Fally, 2008. "Global sourcing under imperfect capital markets," PSE Working Papers halshs-00586005, HAL.
  6. Ranjan, Priya & Tobias, Justin, 2007. "Bayesian Inference in the Gravity Model," Staff General Research Papers 12721, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  7. Markusen, James R., 2002. "Multinational Firms and the Theory of International Trade," MPRA Paper 8380, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Andrei A. Levchenko, 2004. "Institutional Quality and International Trade," IMF Working Papers 04/231, International Monetary Fund.
  9. Fabrice Defever & Farid Toubal, 2007. "Productivity and the Sourcing Modes of Multinational Firms: Evidence from French Firm-Level Data," CEP Discussion Papers dp0842, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  10. Michael P. Keane & Susan E. Feinberg, 2006. "Accounting for the Growth of MNC-Based Trade Using a Structural Model of U.S. MNCs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1515-1558, December.
  11. Barbara J. Spencer, 2005. "International Outsourcing and Incomplete Contracts," NBER Working Papers 11418, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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