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Evidence on Growth, Increasing Returns and the Extent of the Market

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  • Alberto F. Ades
  • Edward L. Glaeser

Abstract

We examine two sets of economies, (19th century U.S. states and 20th century less developed countries) where growth rates are positively correlated with initial levels of development to document how these dynamic increasing returns operate. We find that open economies do not display a positive connection between initial levels and later growth; instead, closed economies do display this positive correlation (i.e. divergence). This evidence suggests that increasing returns operate by expanding the extent of the market (as in the big push theories of Murphy, Shleifer and Vishny (1989)). For U.S. states, we also find that larger markets enhance growth by increasing the division of labor. Among LDCs, while more diversified production increases growth, diversification is negatively associated with openness for the poorest economies (as in the quality ladder theories of Boldrin and Scheinkman (1988), Young (1991) and Stokey (1991)). However, and despite the negative effect that openness has on the diversity of production and, thus, on growth, we find that openness still substantially increases growth for these poorer economies.

Suggested Citation

  • Alberto F. Ades & Edward L. Glaeser, 1994. "Evidence on Growth, Increasing Returns and the Extent of the Market," NBER Working Papers 4714, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4714
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Romer, Paul M, 1986. "Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-1037, October.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Rappaport, Jordan, 2005. "How does labor mobility affect income convergence?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 567-581, March.
    2. Raul da Mota Silveira Neto, 2001. "Localização, Crescimento e Spillovers: Evidências para os Estados Brasileiros e Setores," Anais do XXIX Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 29th Brazilian Economics Meeting] 082, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
    3. Mireille NTSAMA ETOUNDI, 2014. "Impact de la rente pétrolière sur la demande des pays frontaliers du Cameroun," Working Papers 201417, CERDI.
    4. Edward L. Glaeser, 1998. "Are Cities Dying?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 139-160, Spring.
    5. Jean-Marc Siroën, 2012. "Core labour standards and exports," Working Papers DT/2012/18, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
    6. Abo-Zaid Salem M, 2011. "The Trade-Growth Relationship in Israel Revisited: Evidence from Annual Data, 1960-2004," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 6(3), pages 63-93, February.
    7. Alberto Alesina & Romain Wacziarg, 1997. "Openness, Country Size and the Government," NBER Working Papers 6024, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Wacziarg, Romain, 1998. "Measuring the dynamic gains from trade," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2001, The World Bank.
    9. Raul Silveira-Neto & Carlos R. Azzoni, 2006. "Location and regional income disparity dynamics: The Brazilian case," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 85(4), pages 599-613, November.
    10. Jordan Rappaport, 2000. "Is the speed of convergence constant?," Research Working Paper RWP 00-10, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    11. Klenow, Peter J., 1996. "Industry innovation: where and why," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 125-150, June.
    12. Jordan Rappaport, 2000. "How does openness to capital flows affect growth?," Research Working Paper RWP 00-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General

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