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Foreign Subsidization and Excess Capacity

  • Bruce A. Blonigen
  • Wesley W. Wilson

The U.S. steel industry has long held that foreign subsidization and excess capacity has led to its long-run demise, yet no one has formally examined this hypothesis. In this paper, we incorporate foreign subsidization considerations into a model based on Staiger and Wolak's (1992) cyclical-dumping framework and illustrate testable implications of both cyclical excess capacity and structural excess capacity stemming from foreign subsidization. We then use detailed product- and foreign country-level data on steel exports to the U.S. market from 1979 through 2002 to estimate these excess capacity effects. The results provide strong evidence of both cyclical and structural excess capacity effects for exports to the U.S. market. However, the effects are confined to such a narrow range of country-product combinations that it is unlikely that such effects were a significant factor in the fortunes of U.S. steel firms over the past decades.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 11798.

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Date of creation: Nov 2005
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Publication status: published as Blonigen, Bruce A. & Wilson, Wesley W., 2010. "Foreign subsidization and excess capacity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 200-211, March.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:11798
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  1. Crandall, Robert W., 1996. "From competitiveness to competition : The threat of minimills to large national steel companies," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 22(1-2), pages 107-118.
  2. Lenway, Stefanie & Morck, Randall & Yeung, Bernard, 1996. "Rent Seeking, Protectionism and Innovation in the American Steel Industry," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(435), pages 410-21, March.
  3. Aaron Tornell, 1997. "Rational Atrophy: The US Steel Industry," NBER Working Papers 6084, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Yamawaki, Hideki, 1984. "Market structure, capacity expansion, and pricing : A model applied to the Japanese iron and steel industry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 29-62, March.
  5. Meredith A. Crowley, 2004. "Antidumping Policy Under Imperfect Competition: Theory and Evidence," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 443, Econometric Society.
  6. Morck, Randall & Sepanski, Jungsywan & Yeung, Bernard, 2001. "Habitual and Occasional Lobbyers in the U.S. Steel Industry: An EM Algorithm Pooling Approach," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 39(3), pages 365-78, July.
  7. Staiger, Robert W. & Wolak, Frank A., 1992. "The effect of domestic antidumping law in the presence of foreign monopoly," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3-4), pages 265-287, May.
  8. Sharon Oster, 1982. "The Diffusion of Innovation among Steel Firms: The Basic Oxygen Furnace," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(1), pages 45-56, Spring.
  9. Dunlevy, James A, 1980. "A Test of the Capacity Pressure Hypothesis within a Simultaneous Equations Model of Export Performance," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 62(1), pages 131-35, February.
  10. Michael O. Moore, 1996. "The Rise and Fall of Big Steel's Influence on U.S. Trade Policy," NBER Chapters, in: The Political Economy of Trade Protection, pages 15-34 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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