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Import protection, business cycles, and exchange rates: evidence from the Great Recession

  • Chad Bown
  • Meredith Crowley

This paper uses highly detailed, quarterly data for five major industrialized economies to estimate the impact of> macroeconomic fluctuations on import protection policies over 1988:Q1–2010:Q4. First, estimates on a pre-Great Recession sample of data provide evidence of two key relationships. We confirm that appreciations in bilateral real exchange rates lead to substantial increases in antidumping and related forms of import protection: e.g., a 4 percent appreciation results in 60–90 percent more products being subject to import protection. We also provide evidence of a previously overlooked result that policy-imposing countries historically imposed such bilateral import restrictions on trading partners that were going through periods of weak economic growth.> Second, we use the model to then provide the first estimates that link macroeconomic fluctuations to a change in policy-imposing behavior during the Great Recession so as to explain the realized protectionist response. During the Great Recession, the U.S. and other policy-imposing economies became less responsive to exchange rate appreciations. Furthermore, the U.S. and other economies “switched” from their historical behavior and shifted implementing new import protection away from those trading partners that were contracting and toward those experiencing economic growth. In a final exercise, we document how the model’s estimates imply that a 9–20 percent appreciation of China's real exchange rate vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar during the sample period would allow for China’s exporters to have received the "average" import protection treatment under antidumping that the U.S. imposed against other countries.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in its series Working Paper Series with number WP-2011-16.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedhwp:wp-2011-16
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  1. Thomas Prusa & Michael Knetter, 2000. "Macroeconomic Factors and Antidumping Filings: Evidence from Four Countries," Departmental Working Papers 200023, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
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  3. Kyle Bagwell & Robert W. Staiger, 1995. "Protection and the Business Cycle," Discussion Papers 1130, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  4. Ludema, Rodney D & Mayda, Anna Maria, 2011. "Canada: No Place Like Home for Antidumping," CEPR Discussion Papers 8389, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  8. Wendy L. Hansen & Thomas J. Prusa, 1995. "Cumulation and ITC Decision-Making: The Sum of the Parts is Greater thanthe Whole," NBER Working Papers 5062, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Hausman, Jerry & Hall, Bronwyn H & Griliches, Zvi, 1984. "Econometric Models for Count Data with an Application to the Patents-R&D Relationship," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(4), pages 909-38, July.
  10. Hiau Looi Kee & Cristina Neagu & Alessandro Nicita, 2013. "Is Protectionism on the Rise? Assessing National Trade Policies during the Crisis of 2008," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(1), pages 342-346, March.
  11. Brander, James & Krugman, Paul, 1983. "A 'reciprocal dumping' model of international trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(3-4), pages 313-321, November.
  12. Gawande, Kishore & Hoekman, Bernard & Cui, Yue, 2011. "Determinants of trade policy responses to the 2008 financial crisis," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5862, The World Bank.
  13. Kyle Bagwell & Robert W. Staiger, 1997. "An Economic Theory of GATT," NBER Working Papers 6049, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Chad P. Bown, 2004. "How Different Are Safeguards from Antidumping? Evidence from US Trade Policies Toward Steel," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 434, Econometric Society.
  15. Chad P. Bown, 2011. "Taking Stock of Antidumping, Safeguards and Countervailing Duties, 1990–2009," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(12), pages 1955-1998, December.
  16. Douglas A. Irwin, 2005. "The Rise of U.S. Antidumping Activity in Historical Perspective," IMF Working Papers 05/31, International Monetary Fund.
  17. Rose, Andrew K, 2012. "Protectionism Isn’t Counter-Cyclic (anymore)," CEPR Discussion Papers 8937, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Robert Staiger & Frank Wolak, 1994. "Measuring Industry Specific Protection: Antidumping in the United States," International Trade 9410004, EconWPA.
  19. Meredith Crowley, 2007. "Cyclical dumping and U.S. antidumping protection: 1980-2001," Working Paper Series WP-07-21, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  20. Christian Broda & Nuno Limao & David E. Weinstein, 2008. "Optimal Tariffs and Market Power: The Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 2032-65, December.
  21. Meredith Crowley, 2006. "Why are safeguards needed in a trade agreement?," Working Paper Series WP-06-06, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  22. BOWN, CHAD P. & McCULLOCH, RACHEL, 2003. "Nondiscrimination and the WTO Agreement on Safeguards," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(03), pages 327-348, November.
  23. Hillman, Arye L, 1982. "Declining Industries and Political-Support Protectionist Motives," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 1180-87, December.
  24. Giovanni Maggi & Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg, 1999. "Protection for Sale: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(5), pages 1135-1155, December.
  25. Chad P. Bown, 2010. "China's WTO Entry: Antidumping, Safeguards, and Dispute Settlement," NBER Chapters, in: China's Growing Role in World Trade, pages 281-337 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Feinberg, Robert M, 1989. "Exchange Rates and "Unfair Trade."," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(4), pages 704-07, November.
  27. Robert M. Feinberg, 2005. "U.S. Antidumping Enforcement and Macroeconomic Indicators Revisited: Do Petitioners Learn?," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 141(4), pages 612-622, December.
  28. Kishore Gawande & Usree Bandyopadhyay, 2000. "Is Protection for Sale? Evidence on the Grossman-Helpman Theory of Endogenous Protection," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(1), pages 139-152, February.
  29. Trefler, Daniel, 1993. "Trade Liberalization and the Theory of Endogenous Protection: An Econometric Study of U.S. Import Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(1), pages 138-60, February.
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