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Competition, Markups, and the Gains from International Trade

  • Chris Edmond
  • Virgiliu Midrigan
  • Daniel Yi Xu

We study the gains from trade in a model with endogenously variable markups. We show that the pro-competitive gains from trade are large if the economy is characterized by (i) extensive misallocation, i.e., large inefficiencies associated with markups, and (ii) a weak pattern of cross-country comparative advantage in individual sectors. We find strong evidence for both of these ingredients using producer-level data for Taiwanese manufacturing establishments. Parameterizations of the model consistent with this data thus predict large pro-competitive gains from trade, much larger than those in standard Ricardian models. In stark contrast to standard Ricardian models, data on changes in trade volume are not sufficient for determining the gains from trade.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 18041.

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Date of creation: May 2012
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Publication status: published as Chris Edmond & Virgiliu Midrigan & Daniel Yi Xu, 2015. "Competition, Markups, and the Gains from International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(10), pages 3183-3221, October.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18041
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  1. Natalie Chen & Jean Imbs & Andrew Scott, 2009. "The Dynamics of Trade and Competition," Post-Print hal-00612547, HAL.
  2. Levinsohn, J., 1991. "Testing the Imports-As-Market-Discipline Hypothesis," Working Papers 272, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  3. De Loecker, Jan & Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou & Khandelwal, Amit & Pavcnik, Nina, 2012. "Prices, Markups and Trade Reform," CEPR Discussion Papers 8900, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Paolo Epifani & Gino Gancia, 2010. "Trade, markup heterogeneity and misallocations," IEW - Working Papers 469, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  5. Asker, John & Collard-Wexler, Allan & De Loecker, Jan, 2011. "Productivity volatility and the misallocation of resources in developing economies," CEPR Discussion Papers 8469, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Robert C. Feenstra & David E. Weinstein, 2010. "Globalization, Markups and U.S. Welfare," NBER Working Papers 15749, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Pravin Krishna & Devashish Mitra, . "Trade Liberalization, Market Discipline and Productivity Growth: New Evidence From India," Working Papers 96-8, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  8. Richard Pomfret & Patricia Sourdin, 2008. "Why Do Trade Costs Vary?," School of Economics Working Papers 2008-08, University of Adelaide, School of Economics.
  9. Richard Rogerson & Johanna Wallenius, 2007. "Micro and Macro Elasticities in a Life Cycle Model With Taxes," NBER Working Papers 13017, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Christian Broda & David E. Weinstein, 2006. "Globalization and the Gains From Variety," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(2), pages 541-585.
  11. repec:pri:cepsud:231deloecker is not listed on IDEAS
  12. Beatriz de Blas & Katheryn N. Russ, 2010. "Teams of rivals: endogenous markups in a Ricardian world," Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute Working Paper 67, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  13. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2003. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 317-341.
  14. Grubel, Herbert G & Lloyd, P J, 1971. "The Empirical Measurement of Intra- Industry Trade," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 47(120), pages 494-517, December.
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