IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Going global: markups and product quality in the Chinese art market

  • Jennie Bai
  • Jia Guo
  • Benjamin R. Mandel

We analyze two reasons for export prices to be different across markets--namely, quality differentiation and variable markups--and attempt to parse their relative importance and some of their underlying drivers. To overcome the substantial measurement issues in this task, we consider a particular industry as a special case: Chinese fine art. The simplicity of the supply side of art vis-á-vis marginal cost and the wealth of data on its quality characteristics make it possible to separately identify the markup and quality components of international relative prices for Chinese artworks. Through this lens, we trace the process of growth and internationalization of Chinese art since the year 2000. We find strong support for quality sorting into international markets at both the level of artist and artwork, as well as substantial markup differences across destinations. Using a structural model of endogenous quality choice by Feenstra and Romalis (2012), we argue that much of the international quality premium is driven by per unit distribution costs (whether physical or informational) rather than destination-specific preferences for quality.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.newyorkfed.org/research/staff_reports/sr614.html
Download Restriction: no

File URL: http://www.newyorkfed.org/research/staff_reports/sr614.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of New York in its series Staff Reports with number 614.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:614
Contact details of provider: Postal:
33 Liberty Street, New York, NY 10045-0001

Web page: http://www.newyorkfed.org/
Email:


More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Web: http://www.ny.frb.org/rmaghome/staff_rp/ Email:


References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. David Hummels & Alexandre Skiba, 2002. "Shipping the Good Apples Out? An Empirical Confirmation of the Alchian-Allen Conjecture," NBER Working Papers 9023, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Fernandes, Ana M. & Paunov, Caroline, 2009. "Does tougher import competition foster product quality upgrading ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4894, The World Bank.
  3. Mark J. Melitz, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," NBER Working Papers 8881, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Maurice Kugler & Eric Verhoogen, 2008. "The Quality-Complementarity Hypothesis: Theory and Evidence from Colombia," NBER Working Papers 14418, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Eric A. Verhoogen, 2008. "Trade, Quality Upgrading, and Wage Inequality in the Mexican Manufacturing Sector," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(2), pages 489-530.
  6. Crozet, Matthieu & Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2009. "Quality Sorting And Trade: Firm-Level Evidence For French Wine," Working Papers 53883, American Association of Wine Economists.
  7. Amit Khandelwal, 2009. "The Long and Short (of) Quality Ladders," NBER Working Papers 15178, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Juan Carlos Hallak & Jagadeesh Sivadasan, 2009. "Firms' Exporting Behavior under Quality Constraints," NBER Working Papers 14928, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Eckel, Carsten & Iacovone, Leonardo & Javorcik, Beata & Neary, J. Peter, 2015. "Multi-product firms at home and away: Cost- versus quality-based competence," Munich Reprints in Economics 26852, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  10. Kathryn Graddy & Orley Ashenfelter, 2002. "Auctions and the Price of Art," Economics Series Working Papers 131, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  11. Juan Carlos Hallak, 2010. "A Product-Quality View of the Linder Hypothesis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(3), pages 453-466, August.
  12. Victor Ginsburgh & Sheila Weyers, 2006. "Creativity and life cycles of artists," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/99270, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  13. Benjamin R. Mandel, 2009. "Art as an Investment and Conspicuous Consumption Good," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1653-63, September.
  14. Fajgelbaum, Pablo & Grossman, Gene & Helpman, Elhanan, 2011. "Income Distribution, Product Quality, and International Trade," Scholarly Articles 25586659, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Richard Baldwin & James Harrigan, 2011. "Zeros, Quality, and Space: Trade Theory and Trade Evidence," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 60-88, May.
  16. John Sutton, 2007. "Quality, Trade and the Moving Window: The Globalisation Process," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(524), pages F469-F498, November.
  17. Olivier Chanel & Louis-André Gérard-Varet & Victor Ginsburgh, 1996. "The relevance of hedonic price indices: the case of paintings," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/1715, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  18. Robert C. Feenstra & John Romalis, 2012. "International Prices and Endogenous Quality," NBER Working Papers 18314, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Peter K. Schott, 2008. "The relative sophistication of Chinese exports," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 23, pages 5-49, 01.
  20. Iacovone, Leonardo & Javorcik, Beata S., 2008. "Multi-product exporters : diversification and micro-level dynamics," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4723, The World Bank.
  21. Jianping Mei & Michael Moses, 2002. "Art as an Investment and the Underperformance of Masterpieces," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1656-1668, December.
  22. Richard Kneller & Zhihong Yu, . "Quality Selection, Chinese Exports and Theories of Heterogeneous Firm Trade," Discussion Papers 08/44, University of Nottingham, GEP.
  23. Juan Carlos Hallak & Peter K. Schott, 2011. "Estimating Cross-Country Differences in Product Quality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(1), pages 417-474.
  24. David Hummels & Peter J. Klenow, 2005. "The Variety and Quality of a Nation's Exports," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 704-723, June.
  25. Peter K. Schott, 2004. "Across-Product Versus Within-Product Specialization in International Trade," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 119(2), pages 647-678.
  26. Paulo Bastos & Joana Silva, . "The Quality of a Firm’s Exports: Where you Export to Matters," Discussion Papers 08/18, University of Nottingham, GEP.
  27. Pablo D. Fajgelbaum, 2011. "Income Distribution, Product Quality and International Trade," 2011 Meeting Papers 415, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  28. Irene Brambilla & Daniel Lederman & Guido Porto, 2012. "Exports, Export Destinations, and Skills," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(7), pages 3406-38, December.
  29. Antoine Gervais, 2013. "Product Quality and Firm Heterogeneity in International Trade," Working Papers 13-08, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  30. Johnson, Robert C., 2012. "Trade and prices with heterogeneous firms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(1), pages 43-56.
  31. Hallak, Juan Carlos, 2006. "Product quality and the direction of trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 238-265, January.
  32. Werner Pommerehne & Lars Feld, 1997. "The Impact of Museum Purchase on the Auction Prices of Paintings," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 21(3), pages 249-271, September.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:614. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Amy Farber)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.