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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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    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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