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Trade Intensity and Business Cycle Synchronization: Are Developing Countries any Different?

  • César Calderón
  • Alberto Chong

    ()

  • Ernesto H. Stein

Some key criteria in the optimal currency area literature are that countries should join a currency union if they have closer international trade links and more symmetric business cycles. However, both criteria are endogenous. Frankel and Rose (1998) find that trade intensity increases cycle correlation among industrial countries. We study whether the same result holds true for the case of developing countries, as their different patterns of international trade and specialization may lead to cyclical asymmetries among them and between industrial and developing countries. We gather annual information for 147 countries for 1960-99 (33,676 country pairs) and find: (i) countries with higher bilateral trade exhibit higher business cycle synchronization, with an increase of one standard deviation in bilateral trade intensity raising the output correlation from 0. 05 to 0. 09 for all country pairs; (ii) countries with more asymmetric structures of production exhibit a smaller business cycle correlation; (iii) the impact of trade integration on business cycles is higher for industrial countries than both developing and industrial-developing country pairs; (iv) a one standard deviation increase in bilateral trade intensity leads to surges in output correlation from 0. 25 to 0. 39 among industrial countries, from 0. 08 to 0. 10 for our sample of industrial-developing country pairs, and from 0. 03 to 0. 06 among developing countries; (v) the impact of trade intensity on cycle correlation is smaller the greater the production structure asymmetries between the countries.

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Paper provided by Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department in its series Research Department Publications with number 4315.

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Date of creation: Jan 2003
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Handle: RePEc:idb:wpaper:4315
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  1. Barry Eichengreen & Douglas A. Irwin, 1996. "The Role of History in Bilateral Trade Flows," NBER Working Papers 5565, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Alan V. Deardorff, 1995. "Determinants of Bilateral Trade: Does Gravity Work in a Neoclassical World?," NBER Working Papers 5377, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Stockman, Alan C., 1988. "Sectoral and national aggregate disturbances to industrial output in seven European countries," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 387-409.
  4. Todd E. Clark & Eric van Wincoop, 1999. "Borders and business cycles," Research Working Paper 99-07, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  5. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Rose, Andrew K, 1996. "The Endogeneity of the Optimum Currency Area Criteria," CEPR Discussion Papers 1473, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Jean Imbs, 2003. "Trade, Finance, Specialization, and Synchronization," IMF Working Papers 03/81, International Monetary Fund.
  7. William C. Gruben & Jahyeong Koo & Eric Millis, 2002. "How much does international trade affect business cycle synchronization ?," Working Papers 0203, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
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  9. Jeffrey Frankel & Andrew Rose, 2002. "An Estimate Of The Effect Of Common Currencies On Trade And Income," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(2), pages 437-466, May.
  10. Engel, Charles M & Rose, Andrew K, 2001. "Currency Unions and International Integration," CEPR Discussion Papers 2659, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Reuven Glick & Andrew K. Rose, 2001. "Does a currency union affect trade? the time series evidence," Working Paper Series 2001-13, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  12. Frankel, Jeffrey A. & Rose, Andrew K., 1997. "Is EMU more justifiable ex post than ex ante?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-5), pages 753-760, April.
  13. Lichtenberg, Frank R. & Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, Bruno v., 1998. "International R&D spillovers: A comment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(8), pages 1483-1491, September.
  14. M. Ayhan Kose & Kei-Mu Yi, 2001. "International Trade and Business Cycles: Is Vertical Specialization the Missing Link?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 371-375, May.
  15. Kalemli-Ozcan, Sebnem & Sorensen, Bent E. & Yosha, Oved, 2001. "Economic integration, industrial specialization, and the asymmetry of macroeconomic fluctuations," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 107-137, October.
  16. Kwanho Shin & Yunjong Wang, 2003. "Trade Integration and Business Cycle Synchronization in East Asia," Asian Economic Papers, MIT Press, vol. 2(3), pages 1-20.
  17. Shin, Kwanho & Wang, Yunjong, 2004. "Trade integration and business cycle co-movements: the case of Korea with other Asian countries," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 213-230, April.
  18. Fidrmuc, Jarko, 2001. "The Endogeneity of optimum currency area criteria, intraindustry trade and EMU enlargement," BOFIT Discussion Papers 8/2001, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
  19. Shang-Jin Wei, 1996. "Intra-National versus International Trade: How Stubborn are Nations in Global Integration?," NBER Working Papers 5531, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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