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Markups and misallocation with trade and heterogeneous firms

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  • Ariel Weinberger

Abstract

With non-homothetic preferences, a monopolistic competition equilibrium is inefficient in the way inputs are allocated towards production. This paper quantifies a gains from trade component that is present only when reallocation is properly measured in a setting with heterogeneous firms that charge variable markups. Due to variable markups, reallocations initiated by aggregate shocks impact allocative efficiency depending on the adjustment of the market power distribution. My measurement compares real income growth with the hypothetical case of no misallocation in quantities. Using firm and industry-level data from Chile during a period with large terms of trade gains, I find that cost reductions are associated with losses in allocative efficiency because firms pass-through measured productivity gains into markups. From industry-year variation, there is also evidence that industries that import a larger share of their inputs become more misallocated as a result of exchange rate appreciations compared to open sectors whose output competition becomes fiercer.

Suggested Citation

  • Ariel Weinberger, 2015. "Markups and misallocation with trade and heterogeneous firms," Globalization Institute Working Papers 251, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:feddgw:251
    DOI: 10.24149/gwp251
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    2. Hsu, Wen-Tai & Lu, Yi & Wu, Guiying Laura, 2020. "Competition, markups, and gains from trade: A quantitative analysis of China between 1995 and 2004," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 122(C).
    3. Kristian Behrens & Sergey Kichko & Philip Ushchev, 2018. "Intersectoral Markup Divergence," CESifo Working Paper Series 6965, CESifo.
    4. Ariel Weinberger & Qian Xuefeng & Mahmut Yasar, 2017. "Export Tax Rebates and Resource Misallocation: Evidence from a Large Developing Country," Globalization Institute Working Papers 302, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

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