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Do Multinational Enterprises Contribute to Convergence or Divergence? A Disaggregated Analysis of US FDI

  • David Mayer-Foulkes
  • Peter Nunnenkamp

It is widely held that foreign direct investment (FDI) has a positive effect on economic growth. To test this hypothesis, we perform convergence regressions derived from a theoretical model on the impact of FDI on endogenous technological change in small economies. The model includes FDI externalities that enhance growth, but also shows that FDI can crowd out host country income and reduce local innovation. The empirical analysis employs disaggregated US data for various FDI-related activities-in addition to the conventionally used aggregate FDI stocks and flows. We estimate the net FDI impact on the convergence rate of per-capita income to US levels, controlling for human development, financial development, and trade. We find that FDI accelerates convergence for high-income countries only, otherwise slowing it down. Copyright � 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation � 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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Paper provided by DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade in its series DEGIT Conference Papers with number c010_045.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:deg:conpap:c010_045
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  1. Philippe Aghion & Peter Howitt & David Mayer-Foulkes, 2004. "The Effect of Financial Development on Convergence: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 10358, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Dutt, Amitava Krishna, 1997. "The pattern of direct foreign investment and economic growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(11), pages 1925-1936, November.
  3. Levine, Ross & Loayza, Norman & Beck, Thorsten, 1999. "Financial intermediation and growth : Causality and causes," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2059, The World Bank.
  4. Bruce A. Blonigen & Miao Wang, 2004. "Inappropriate Pooling of Wealthy and Poor Countries in Empirical FDI Studies," NBER Working Papers 10378, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1990. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 3541, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Evans, Paul, 1996. "Using cross-country variances to evaluate growth theories," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(6-7), pages 1027-1049.
  7. Luiz de Mello, 1997. "Foreign direct investment in developing countries and growth: A selective survey," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(1), pages 1-34.
  8. Magnus Blomstrom & Robert E. Lipsey & Mario Zejan, 1992. "What Explains Developing Country Growth?," NBER Working Papers 4132, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Peter Klenow & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 1997. "The Neoclassical Revival in Growth Economics: Has It Gone Too Far?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 73-114 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Eduardo Borensztein & Jose De Gregorio & Jong-Wha Lee, 1995. "How Does Foreign Direct Investment Affect Economic Growth?," NBER Working Papers 5057, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Pritchett, Lant, 1995. "Divergence, big time," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1522, The World Bank.
  12. Manuel R. AGOSIN & Ricardo MAYER, 2000. "Foreign Investment In Developing Countries, Does It Crowd In Domestic Investment?," UNCTAD Discussion Papers 146, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.
  13. Görg, Holger & Greenaway, David, 2003. "Much Ado About Nothing? Do Domestic Firms Really Benefit from Foreign Direct Investment?," IZA Discussion Papers 944, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. V N Balasubramanyam & M Salisu & David Sapsford., . "Foreign Direct Investment and Growth in EP and IS Countries," Working Papers ec18/94, Department of Economics, University of Lancaster.
  15. Alfaro, Laura & Chanda, Areendam & Kalemli-Ozcan, Sebnem & Sayek, Selin, 2004. "FDI and economic growth: the role of local financial markets," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 89-112, October.
  16. Khawar Mariam, 2005. "Foreign Direct Investment and Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Analysis," Global Economy Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-14, March.
  17. Howitt, Peter & Mayer-Foulkes, David, 2005. "R&D, Implementation, and Stagnation: A Schumpeterian Theory of Convergence Clubs," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(1), pages 147-77, February.
  18. David L. Carr & James R. Markusen & Keith E. Maskus, 1998. "Estimating the Knowledge-Capital Model of the Multinational Enterprise," NBER Working Papers 6773, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125519 is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Xu, Bin, 2000. "Multinational enterprises, technology diffusion, and host country productivity growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 477-493, August.
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