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Trade in Business Services in General Equilibrium

  • James R. Markusen
  • Bridget Strand

Trade in business services has been attracting attention from academic researchers, policy makers, and business journalists. While there are many anecdotes, there has been little in the way of formal theory applied to this issue. In this paper, we adapt a general model of fragmentation of production activities to try to capture the specific features of business services. Following a general discussion, we calibrate a numerical general-equilibrium simulation model to a situation in which both trade and foreign investment in services are initially banned to technically infeasible. We then compute three counter-factual scenarios: one in which trade but not investment in services is feasible or allowed, one in which investment but not trade is allowed, and onein which both trade and investment in services are allowed.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12816.

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Date of creation: Jan 2007
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12816
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  1. Deardorff, A.V., 1998. "Fragmentation in Simple Trade Models," Papers 98-11, Michigan - Center for Research on Economic & Social Theory.
  2. Feenstra, Robert C. & Hanson, Gordon H., 1997. "Foreign direct investment and relative wages: Evidence from Mexico's maquiladoras," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 371-393, May.
  3. J. Peter Neary, 1995. "Factor Mobility and International Trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(s1), pages 4-23, November.
  4. Feenstra, Robert C & Hanson, Gordon H, 1996. "Globalization, Outsourcing, and Wage Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 240-45, May.
  5. Venables, Anthony J, 1993. "Equilibrium Locations of Vertically Linked Industries," CEPR Discussion Papers 802, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Hummels, David & Ishii, Jun & Yi, Kei-Mu, 2001. "The nature and growth of vertical specialization in world trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 75-96, June.
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  8. Markusen, James R., 1984. "Multinationals, multi-plant economies, and the gains from trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3-4), pages 205-226, May.
  9. Markusen, James R., 1990. "Derationalizing tariffs with specialized intermediate inputs and differentiated final goods," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3-4), pages 375-383, May.
  10. James R. Markusen, 2004. "Multinational Firms and the Theory of International Trade," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262633078, June.
  11. Hoekman, Bernard, 2006. "Liberalizing trade in services : a survey," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4030, The World Bank.
  12. Norman, Victor D & Venables, Anthony J, 1993. "International Trade, Factor Mobility and Trade Costs," CEPR Discussion Papers 766, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Antras, Pol, 2003. "Firms, Contracts, and Trade Structure," Scholarly Articles 3196328, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  14. Kei-Mu Yi, 2003. "Can Vertical Specialization Explain the Growth of World Trade?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(1), pages 52-102, February.
  15. Jagdish Bhagwati & Arvind Panagariya & T. N. Srinivasan, 2004. "The Muddles over Outsourcing," International Trade 0408004, EconWPA.
  16. Ethier, Wilfred J, 1982. "National and International Returns to Scale in the Modern Theory of International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(3), pages 389-405, June.
  17. Jim Markusen & Anthony Venables, 2005. "A Multi-Country Approach to Factor Proporations Trade and Trade Costs," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp051, IIIS.
  18. James Markusen & Thomas Rutherford & David Tarr, 2005. "Trade and direct investment in producer services and the domestic market for expertise," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 38(3), pages 758-777, August.
  19. Markusen, James R, 1989. "Trade in Producer Services and in Other Specialized Intermediate Inputs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 85-95, March.
  20. Francois, Joseph F, 1990. "Producer Services, Scale, and the Division of Labor," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(4), pages 715-29, October.
  21. Kevin H. Zhang & James R. Markusen, 1997. "Vertical Multinationals and Host-Country Characteristics," NBER Working Papers 6203, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Markusen, James R., 1983. "Factor movements and commodity trade as complements," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3-4), pages 341-356, May.
  23. Joseph F. Francois, 1990. "Trade in Producer Services and Returns Due to Specialization under Monopolistic Competition," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 23(1), pages 109-24, February.
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