IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

How Do Firms Organize Trade? Evidence from Ghana

  • Jens Krüger

The literature on firm heterogeneity in international trade posits that only the most productive firms become exporters (Melitz 2003). However, empirical findings suggest that also firms that are not highly productive export. This paper investigates empirically how firms organize their export trade. If selling directly, sunk costs of foreign market entry are arguably very high, so only productive firms can achieve this (Schroeder et al. 2003). Low productivity firms, by contrast, may prefer to export through trading companies, which involves lower sunk costs. Using a firm level panel data set of Ghanaian firms we investigate the relationship between firm productivity and the use of export intermediaries. Our estimation results take simultaneity problems into account and reveal that indeed low productivity firms tend to export through intermediaries

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:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Kiel Advanced Studies Working Papers with number 449.

in new window

Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kie:kieasw:449
Contact details of provider: Postal: Kiellinie 66, D-24105 Kiel
Phone: +49 431 8814-1
Fax: +49 431 85853
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

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. Melitz, Marc J, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," CEPR Discussion Papers 3381, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Arne Bigsten & Paul Collier & Stefan Dercon & Marcel Fafchamps & Bernard Gauthier & Jan Willem Gunning & Abena Oduro & Remco Oostendorp & Catherine Pattillo & Måns Söderbom & Francis Teal & Albert Zeu, 2002. "Do African Manufacturing Firms Learn from Exporting?," CSAE Working Paper Series 2002-09, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  3. Mike W Peng & Anne S York, 2001. "Behind Intermediary Performance in Export Trade: Transactions, Agents, and Resources," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 32(2), pages 327-346, June.
  4. Gordon H. Hanson & Robert C. Feenstra, 2001. "Intermediaries in Entrepot Trade: Hong Kong Re-Exports of Chinese Goods," NBER Working Papers 8088, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Francis Teal, 1999. "Why can Mauritius export manufactures and Ghana not?," CSAE Working Paper Series 1999-10, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  6. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2000. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," NBER Working Papers 7819, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Gordon H. Hanson & Chong Xiang, 2008. "Testing the Melitz Model of Trade: An Application to U.S. Motion Picture Exports," NBER Working Papers 14461, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Arne Bigsten & Paul Collier & Stefan Dercon & Marcel Fafcharnps & Bernard Gauthier & Jan Willern Gunning & Jean Habarurema & Anders Isaksson & Abena Oduro & Remco Oostendorp & Cathy Pattillo & Mans So, 1999. "Exports of African manufactures: macro policy and firm behaviour," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(1), pages 53-71.
  9. Görg, Holger & Hanley, Aoife & Strobl, Eric, 2007. "Productivity Effects of International Outsourcing: Evidence from Plant Level Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 6361, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Sanghamitra Das & Mark J. Roberts & James R. Tybout, 2001. "Market entry costs, producer heterogeneity and export dynamics," Indian Statistical Institute, Planning Unit, New Delhi Discussion Papers 03-10, Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi, India.
  11. Mike W Peng & Anne Y Ilinitch, 1998. "Export Intermediary Firms: A Note on Export Development Research," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 29(3), pages 609-620, September.
  12. Greif, Avner, 1993. "Contract Enforceability and Economic Institutions in Early Trade: the Maghribi Traders' Coalition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 525-48, June.
  13. Trabold, Harald & Parvati Trubswetter & Philipp J H Schroder, 2003. "Intermediation in Foreign Trade: When do Exporters Rely on Intermediaries?," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 206, Royal Economic Society.
  14. Amil Petrin & Brian P. Poi & James Levinsohn, 2004. "Production function estimation in Stata using inputs to control for unobservables," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 4(2), pages 113-123, June.
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:kie:kieasw:449. 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: (Dieter Stribny)

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.