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Rising Import Tariffs, Falling Export Growth: When Modern Supply Chains Meet Old-Style Protectionism

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  • Kyle Handley
  • Fariha Kamal
  • Ryan Monarch

Abstract

We examine the impacts of the 2018-2019 U.S. import tariff increases on U.S. export growth through the lens of supply chain linkages. Using 2016 confidential firm-trade linked data, we identify firms that eventually faced tariff increases. They accounted for 84% of all exports and represented 65% of manufacturing employment. For the average affected firm, the implied cost is $900 per worker in new duties. We construct product-level measures of exporters' exposure to import tariff increases and estimate the impact on U.S. export growth. The most exposed products had relatively lower export growth in 2018-2019, with larger effects in 2019. The decline in export growth in 2019Q3, for example, is equivalent to an ad valorem tariff on U.S. exports of 2% for the typical product and up to 4% for products with higher than average exposure.

Suggested Citation

  • Kyle Handley & Fariha Kamal & Ryan Monarch, 2020. "Rising Import Tariffs, Falling Export Growth: When Modern Supply Chains Meet Old-Style Protectionism," NBER Working Papers 26611, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:26611
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kyle Handley & Nuno Limão, 2017. "Policy Uncertainty, Trade, and Welfare: Theory and Evidence for China and the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(9), pages 2731-2783, September.
    2. Timothy Dunne & J. Bradford Jensen & Mark J. Roberts, 2009. "Introduction to "Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data"," NBER Chapters, in: Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data, pages 1-12, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Alberto Cavallo & Gita Gopinath & Brent Neiman & Jenny Tang, 2019. "Tariff Passthrough at the Border and at the Store: Evidence from US Trade Policy," IMF Working Papers 19/238, International Monetary Fund.
    4. Michael E. Waugh, 2019. "The Consumption Response to Trade Shocks: Evidence from the US-China Trade War," NBER Working Papers 26353, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Timothy Dunne & J. Bradford Jensen & Mark J. Roberts, 2009. "Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number dunn05-1, Juni.
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    Cited by:

    1. Freund,Caroline & Maliszewska,Maryla & Mattoo,Aaditya & Ruta,Michele, 2020. "When Elephants Make Peace : The Impact of the China-U.S. Trade Agreement on Developing Countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 9173, The World Bank.
    2. World Bank, "undated". "World Bank East Asia and Pacific Economic Update, April 2020," World Bank Other Operational Studies 33477, The World Bank.
    3. Bekkers, Eddy & Schroeter, Sofia, 2020. "An economic analysis of the US-China trade conflict," WTO Staff Working Papers ERSD-2020-04, World Trade Organization (WTO), Economic Research and Statistics Division.
    4. Fiorentini, Riccardo, 2020. "The Persisting US Trade Deficit: Is Protectionistm the Right Answer?," Economia Internazionale / International Economics, Camera di Commercio Industria Artigianato Agricoltura di Genova, vol. 73(2), pages 155-186.
    5. Jaime de Melo & Anna Twum, 2020. "The long Road towards Supply Chain Trade in Africa," Post-Print hal-02865529, HAL.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F1 - International Economics - - Trade
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue

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