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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. Joseph F. Francois & Ian Wooton, 2007. "Market structure and market access," Economics working papers 2007-06, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
  2. Bertrand, Marianne & Kramarz, Francis, 2002. "Does Entry Regulation Hinder Job Creation? Evidence from the French Retail Industry," IZA Discussion Papers 415, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Emek Basker & Van Pham Hoang, 2011. "Wal-Mart as Catalyst to U.S.-China Trade," Working Papers 01, Development and Policies Research Center (DEPOCEN), Vietnam.
  4. Jose Manuel Campa & Linda S. Goldberg, 2006. "Distribution margins, imported inputs, and the sensitivity of the CPI to exchange rates," Staff Reports 247, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  5. Beata Javorcik & Wolfgang Keller & James Tybout, 2008. "Openness and Industrial Response in a Wal-Mart World: A Case Study of Mexican Soaps, Detergents and Surfactant Producers," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(12), pages 1558-1580, December.
  6. Martin Richardson, 2004. "Trade Policy and Access to Retail Distribution," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(4), pages 676-688, 09.
  7. Horst Raff & Nicolas Schmitt, 2008. "Buyer Power in International Markets," Kiel Working Papers 1431, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  8. Marc J. Melitz & Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano, 2008. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(1), pages 295-316.
  9. Miyagiwa, K., 1991. "Reforming the Japanese Distribution System: Will it Boost Imports to Japan?," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 91-04, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  10. Eckel, Carsten, 2009. "International trade and retailing," BERG Working Paper Series 63, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
  11. Fabiano Schivardi & Eliana Viviano, 2010. "Entry Barriers in Retail Trade," Working Papers CELEG 1003, Dipartimento di Economia e Finanza, LUISS Guido Carli.
  12. 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.
  13. Haskel, Jonathan & Sadun, Raffaella, 2009. "Regulation and UK Retailing Productivity: Evidence from Micro Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 7140, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  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. 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.
  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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