IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ifs/ifsewp/03-12.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Survival of the best fit: exposure to low-wage countries and the (uneven) growth of US manufacturing plants

Author

Listed:
  • Andrew B. Bernard

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Dartmouth University)

  • J. Bradford Jensen

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

  • Peter K. Schott

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Yale University)

Abstract

This paper examines the role of international trade in the reallocation of U.S. manufacturing activity within and across industries from 1977 to 1997. It introduces a new measure of industry exposure to international trade, motivated by the Heckscher-Ohlin model, which focuses on where imports originate rather than their overall level. Results demonstrate that plant survival as well as output and employment growth are negatively associated with the share of industry imports sourced from the world's lowest-wage countries. Within industries, activity is reallocated towards capital-intensive plants. Plants are also more likely to alter their product mix (i.e. switch industries) in response to trade with low-wage countries. Plants altering their product mix switch to industries that are more capitaland skill-intensive.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter K. Schott, 2003. "Survival of the best fit: exposure to low-wage countries and the (uneven) growth of US manufacturing plants," IFS Working Papers W03/12, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:03/12
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.ifs.org.uk/wps/wp0312.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter K. Schott, 2003. "Falling Trade Costs, Heterogeneous Firms, and Industry Dynamics," Working Paper Series WP03-4, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
    2. Richard B. Freeman, 1982. "Crime and the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 1031, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter K. Schott, 2001. "Factor Price Equality and the Economies of the United States," NBER Working Papers 8068, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. John Sutton, 1997. "Gibrat's Legacy," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 40-59, March.
    5. Feenstra, Robert C, 1994. "New Product Varieties and the Measurement of International Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 157-177, March.
    6. Blonigen, Bruce A. & Tomlin, KaSaundra, 2001. "Size and growth of Japanese plants in the United States," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 931-952, May.
    7. Thomas J. Kane & Cecilia Elena Rouse & Douglas Staiger, 1999. "Estimating Returns to Schooling When Schooling is Misreported," NBER Working Papers 7235, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Mark Doms & Eric J. Bartelsman, 2000. "Understanding Productivity: Lessons from Longitudinal Microdata," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(3), pages 569-594, September.
    9. Abowd, John M. & Freeman, Richard B. (ed.), 1991. "Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 1, number 9780226000954, December.
    10. Jeffrey D. Sachs & Howard J. Shatz, 1994. "Trade and Jobs in Manufacturing," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(1), pages 1-84.
    11. Richard B. Freeman & Lawrence F. Katz, 1991. "Industrial Wage and Employment Determination in an Open Economy," NBER Chapters, in: Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market, pages 235-259, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Olley, G Steven & Pakes, Ariel, 1996. "The Dynamics of Productivity in the Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1263-1297, November.
    13. Eric J. Bartelsman & Wayne Gray, 1996. "The NBER Manufacturing Productivity Database," NBER Technical Working Papers 0205, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen, 2004. "Why Some Firms Export," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(2), pages 561-569, May.
    15. Timothy Dunne & Mark J. Roberts & Larry Samuelson, 1988. "Patterns of Firm Entry and Exit in U.S. Manufacturing Industries," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(4), pages 495-515, Winter.
    16. Hall, Bronwyn H, 1987. "The Relationship between Firm Size and Firm Growth in the U.S. Manufacturing Sector," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(4), pages 583-606, June.
    17. Timothy Dunne & Mark J. Roberts & Larry Samuelson, 1989. "The Growth and Failure of U. S. Manufacturing Plants," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 104(4), pages 671-698.
    18. Steven J. Davis & John Haltiwanger, 1992. "Gross Job Creation, Gross Job Destruction, and Employment Reallocation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 107(3), pages 819-863.
    19. Leamer, Edward E, 1987. "Paths of Development in the Three-Factor, n-Good General Equilibrium Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(5), pages 961-999, October.
    20. Hopenhayn, Hugo A., 1992. "Exit, selection, and the value of firms," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 16(3-4), pages 621-653.
    21. Edward E. Leamer, 1996. "What's the Use of Factor Contents?," NBER Working Papers 5448, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    22. Hopenhayn, Hugo A, 1992. "Entry, Exit, and Firm Dynamics in Long Run Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(5), pages 1127-1150, September.
    23. John M. Abowd & Richard B. Freeman, 1991. "Immigration, Trade, and the Labor Market," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number abow91-1, July.
    24. Ana L. Revenga, 1992. "Exporting Jobs?The Impact of Import Competition on Employment and Wages in U. S. Manufacturing," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 107(1), pages 255-284.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter K. Schott, 2002. "Survival of the Best Fit: Competition from Low Wage Countries and the (Uneven) Growth of US Manufacturing Plants," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm299, Yale School of Management.
    2. Amit Khandelwal, 2010. "The Long and Short (of) Quality Ladders," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 77(4), pages 1450-1476.
    3. Stefano Federico, 2014. "Industry Dynamics and Competition from Low-Wage Countries: Evidence on Italy," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 76(3), pages 389-410, June.
    4. Acemoglu, Daron & Cao, Dan, 2015. "Innovation by entrants and incumbents," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 157(C), pages 255-294.
    5. Bartelsman, Eric & Haltiwanger, John C. & Scarpetta, Stefano, 2004. "Microeconomic Evidence of Creative Destruction in Industrial and Developing Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 1374, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Ushijima, Tatsuo, 2005. "Internal capital market and the growth and survival of Japanese plants in the United States," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 366-385, September.
    7. Hugo A. Hopenhayn, 2011. "Firm Microstructure and Aggregate Productivity," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 43(s1), pages 111-145, August.
    8. Meri Davlasheridze & Pinar C. Geylani, 2017. "Small Business vulnerability to floods and the effects of disaster loans," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 49(4), pages 865-888, December.
    9. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2006. "Multi-Product Firms and Product Switching," NBER Working Papers 12293, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Bernard, Andrew B. & Redding, Stephen & Schott, Peter K., 2003. "Product choice and product switching," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3672, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    11. Geurts, Karen & Van Biesebroeck, Johannes, 2016. "Firm creation and post-entry dynamics of de novo entrants," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 59-104.
    12. Guidi, Francesco & Solomon, Edna & Trushin, Eshref & Ugur, Mehmet, 2015. "Inverted-U relationship between innovation and survival: Evidence from firm-level UK data," EconStor Preprints 110896, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.
    13. Magnani, Elisabetta & Prentice, David, 2003. "Did globalization reduce unionization? Evidence from US manufacturing," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(6), pages 705-726, December.
    14. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2011. "Multiproduct Firms and Trade Liberalization," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 126(3), pages 1271-1318.
    15. Jorge Saba Arbache, 2001. "Trade Liberalisation and Labor Markets in Developing Countries: Theory and Evidence," Studies in Economics 0112, School of Economics, University of Kent.
    16. Fontanelli, Luca & Guerini, Mattia & Napoletano, Mauro, 2023. "International trade and technological competition in markets with dynamic increasing returns," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 149(C).
    17. Rui Castro & Gian Luca Clementi & Yoonsoo Lee, 2015. "Cross Sectoral Variation in the Volatility of Plant Level Idiosyncratic Shocks," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(1), pages 1-29, March.
    18. Douglas W Dwyer, 1995. "Technology Locks, Creative Destruction And Non-Convergence In Productivity Levels," Working Papers 95-6, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    19. Emin Dinlersoz & Glenn MacDonald, 2009. "The Industry Life-Cycle of the Size Distribution of Firms," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 12(4), pages 648-667, October.
    20. Jens J. Krüger, 2008. "The Sources Of Aggregate Productivity Growth: Us Manufacturing Industries, 1958–1996," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(4), pages 405-427, October.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Low-Wage Country Import Competition; Heckscher-Ohlin; Manufacturing Plant;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F11 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Neoclassical Models of Trade
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance
    • L60 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:03/12. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Emma Hyman (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/ifsssuk.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.