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Product Switching in a Model of Learning

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  • Olga A. Timoshenko

    () (Department of Economics/Institute for International Economic Policy, George Washington University)

Abstract

New exporters add and drop products with much greater frequency than old exporters. This paper rationalizes this behavior with a model of demand learning in which an exporters profitability on the demand side is determined by a time-invariant firmdestination appeal index, and transient firm-destination-year preference shocks. New exporters must learn about their appeal indices in the presence of these shocks, and respond to fluctuations in demand by adding and dropping products more frequently than older exporters because they have less information about their attractiveness to consumers. Calibrated to match cross-section distribution of sales and scope, the model quantitatively accounts for the contribution of the extensive margins to aggregate Brazilian exports. The model predicts that in response to a decline in trade costs, existing exporters add new products and new exporters enter a destination. Counterfactual implies that the contribution of product adding to export growth resulting from trade liberalization is three times larger than the contribution of exporter entry.

Suggested Citation

  • Olga A. Timoshenko, 2012. "Product Switching in a Model of Learning," Working Papers 2012-10, The George Washington University, Institute for International Economic Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:gwi:wpaper:2012-10
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Tatsuro Senga, 2014. "A New Look at Uncertainty Shocks: Imperfect Information and Misallocation," UTokyo Price Project Working Paper Series 042, University of Tokyo, Graduate School of Economics.
    2. Tolga Cebeci & Ana M. Fernandes, 2015. "Microdynamics of Turkey's Export Boom in the 2000s," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(5), pages 825-855, May.
    3. Carsten Eckel & Leonardo Iacovone & Beata Javorcik & J. Peter Neary, 2016. "Testing the Core-competency Model of Multi-product Exporters," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(4), pages 699-716, September.
    4. Jerónimo Carballo & Georg Schaur & Christian Volpe Martincus, 2016. "Posts as Trade Facilitators," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 94576, Inter-American Development Bank.
    5. Brendan Epstein & Alan Finkelstein Shapiro & Andres Gonzalez Gomez, 2017. "Financial Disruptions and the Cyclical Upgrading of Labor," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 26, pages 204-224, October.
    6. Yaniv Yedid-Levi & Stefanie Haller & Doireann Fitzgerald, 2016. "How Exporters Grow," 2016 Meeting Papers 499, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    7. Christian Volpe Martincus, 2016. "Out of the Border Labyrinth: An Assessment of Trade Facilitation Initiatives in Latin America and the Caribbean," IDB Publications (Books), Inter-American Development Bank, number 96856, February.
    8. Crowley, M. & Song, H. & Meng, N., 2016. "Tariff Scares: Trade policy uncertainty and foreign market entry by Chinese firms," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1676, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    9. Costas Arkolakis & Theodore Papageorgiou & Olga Timoshenko, 2018. "Firm Learning and Growth," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 27, pages 146-168, January.
      • Costas Arkolakis & Theodore Papageorgiou & Olga A. Timoshenko, 2015. "Firm Learning and Growth," Working Papers 2015-5, The George Washington University, Institute for International Economic Policy.
    10. N. Berman & V. Rebeyrol & V. Vicard, 2015. "Demand learning and firm dynamics: evidence from exporters," Working papers 551, Banque de France.
    11. Antoine Gervais, 2015. "Multiregional Firms and Region Switching in the US Manufacturing Sector," Working Papers 15-22, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    12. Marc-Andreas Muendler & James E. Rauch, 2018. "Do Employee Spinoffs Learn Markets from their Parents? Evidence from International Trade," CESifo Working Paper Series 6892, CESifo Group Munich.
    13. Costas Arkolakis & Marc-Andreas Muendler, 2010. "The Extensive Margin of Exporting Products: A Firm-level Analysis," CESifo Working Paper Series 3309, CESifo Group Munich.
    14. repec:idb:idbbks:7994 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Jerónimo Carballo & Georg Schaur & Christian Volpe Martincus, 2016. "Posts as Trade Facilitators," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 7681, Inter-American Development Bank.
    16. Timoshenko, Olga A., 2015. "Learning versus sunk costs explanations of export persistence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 113-128.
    17. Olga A. Timoshenko & Erick Sager, 2016. "The EMG Distribution and Aggregate Trade Elasticities," Working Papers 2016-15, The George Washington University, Institute for International Economic Policy.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Learning; product switching; firm dynamics; exports; Brazil;

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance

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