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Trade Costs, Market Integration, and Macroeconomic Volatility

  • Kanda Naknoi
  • Allan D. Brunner

This paper examines the effects of trade costs on macroeconomic volatility. We first construct a dynamic, two-country general equilibrium model, where the degree of market integration depends directly on trade costs (transport costs, tariffs, etc.). The model is a extension of Obstfeld and Rogoff (1995). Naturally, a reduction in trade costs leads to more market integration, as the relative price of foreign goods falls and households increase their consumption of imported goods. In addition, with more market integration, the model predicts that the variability of the real exchange rate should fall, while the variability of the trade balance should increase. Trade costs have ambiguous effects on the volatility of other macro variables, such as income and consumption. Finally, we present some empirical findings that provide mixed support for the model's predictions.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 03/54.

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Length: 49
Date of creation: 01 Mar 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:03/54
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  19. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  20. Jonathan E. Haskel & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2000. "Have Falling Tariffs and Transportation Costs Raised U.S. Wage Inequality?," NBER Working Papers 7539, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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