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Foreign Market Conditions and Export Performance: Does 'Crowdedness' Reduce Exports?

  • Breinlich, Holger
  • Tucci, Alessandra

This paper analyzes the link between firm exports and the competitive environment in foreign markets. We derive a theory-based econometric specification linking destination-specific exports to foreign demand and the degree of 'crowdedness' of foreign markets. The latter is a measure of the number and efficiency of firms competing in a given market and the barriers impeding their access. We estimate this specification on a large sample of Italian manufacturing firms between 1992 and 2003 and use the results for counterfactual experiments. We find that increases in the crowdedness of foreign markets have reduced Italian exports by around 0.2%-0.3% per year. However, other factors such as higher unit labor costs and weak demand growth in Italy's main export market (the EU15) have been much more important in explaining Italian export performance. Our results also indicate that China's impact on Italian exports is small and if anything positive.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7975.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7975
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  1. Barba Navaretti, Giorgio & Faini, Riccardo & Tucci, Alessandra, 2008. "Does Family Control Affect Trade Performance? Evidence for Italian Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 7082, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Tiziano Razzolini & Davide Vannoni, 2011. "Export Premia and Subcontracting Discount: Passive Strategies and Performance in Domestic and Foreign Markets," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(6), pages 984-1013, 06.
  3. Santos Silva, J.M.C & Tenreyro, Silvana, 2005. "The Log of Gravity," CEPR Discussion Papers 5311, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Lorenzo Casaburi & Valeria Gattai & G. Alfredo Minerva, 2007. "Firms' International Status and Heterogeneity in Performance: Evidence from Italy," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, vol. 97(3), pages 151-188, May-June.
  5. Andrea Caggese & Vicente Cuñat, 2006. "Financing constraints and fixed-term employment contracts," Economics Working Papers 1010, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  6. Benfratello, Luigi & Schiantarelli, Fabio & Sembenelli, Alessandro, 2006. "Banks and Innovation: Microeconometric Evidence on Italian Firms," IZA Discussion Papers 2032, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Bronwyn H. Hall & Francesca Lotti & Jacques Mairesse, 2009. "Innovation and productivity in SMEs. Empirical evidence for Italy," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 718, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  8. Gordon H. Hanson & Raymond Robertson, 2008. "China and the Manufacturing Exports of Other Developing Countries," NBER Working Papers 14497, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. 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.
  10. Thomas Chaney, 2008. "Distorted Gravity: The Intensive and Extensive Margins of International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1707-21, September.
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