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Imports, Pass-Through, and the Structure of Retail Markets

  • Horst Raff
  • Nicolas Schmitt

We construct a model of trade with heterogeneous retailers to examine the effects of trade liberalization on retail market structure, imports and social welfare. We are especially interested in studying the degree of pass-through of import into retail prices and the effects of retail market regulation. The paper shows that the degree of pass-through may be large when market structure effects are taken into account, and that restrictions on retailing may have significant effects on imports and the degree of pass-through. The paper helps explain the apparent discrepancy between the low observed degree of pass-through and the large benefit that consumers seem to derive from trade liberalization

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Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Kiel Working Papers with number 1556.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kie:kieliw:1556
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  1. Raff, Horst & Schmitt, Nicolas, 2009. "Buyer power in international markets," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(2), pages 222-229, November.
  2. Marc J. Melitz & Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano, 2005. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," Development Working Papers 201, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
  3. Joseph Francois & Ian Wooton, 2008. "Market Structure and Market Access," CESifo Working Paper Series 2239, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Fabiano Schivardi & Eliana Viviano, 2008. "Entry Barriers in Retail Trade," EIEF Working Papers Series 0814, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF), revised Jul 2008.
  5. Jonathan Haskel & Raffaella Sadun, 2012. "Regulation and UK Retailing Productivity: Evidence from Microdata," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 79(315), pages 425-448, 07.
  6. Marianne Bertrand & Francis Kramarz, 2002. "Does Entry Regulation Hinder Job Creation? Evidence From The French Retail Industry," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1369-1413, November.
  7. Beata Smarzynska Javorcik & Wolfgang Keller & James R. Tybout, 2006. "Openness and Industrial Responses in a Wal-Mart World: A Case Study of Mexican Soaps, Detergents and Surfactant Producers," NBER Working Papers 12457, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Emek Basker & Pham Hoang Van, 2007. "Wal-Mart as Catalyst to U.S.-China Trade," Working Papers 0710, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
  9. Miyagiwa, K., 1991. "Reforming the Japanese Distribution System: Will it Boost Imports to Japan?," Working Papers 91-04, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
  10. Hellerstein, Rebecca, 2008. "Who bears the cost of a change in the exchange rate? Pass-through accounting for the case of beer," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 14-32, September.
  11. Goldberg, Linda S. & Campa, Jose M., 2006. "Distribution margins, imported inputs, and the insensitivity of the CPI to exchange rates," IESE Research Papers D/625, IESE Business School.
  12. Martin Richardson, 2004. "Trade Policy and Access to Retail Distribution," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(4), pages 676-688, 09.
  13. Carsten Eckel, 2009. "International Trade and Retailing," CESifo Working Paper Series 2597, CESifo Group Munich.
  14. Richard E. Caves, 1998. "Industrial Organization and New Findings on the Turnover and Mobility of Firms," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(4), pages 1947-1982, December.
  15. Ronald Jarmin & Shawn Klimek & Javier Miranda, 2005. "The Role of Retail Chains: National, Regional, and Industry Results," Working Papers 05-30, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  16. Javier Miranda & Shawn Klimek & Ron Jarmin, 2004. "Firm Entry and Exit in the U.S. Retail Sector, 1977-1997," Working Papers 04-17, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
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