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Vertical Networks and US Auto Parts Exports: Is Japan Different?

Author

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  • Keith Head
  • John Ries
  • Barbara J. Spencer

Abstract

This paper develops a model in which upstream network insiders' conduct relationship specific investment that induces the downstream firm to transact within networks. The scale of destination-country production and part-specific measures of the importance of network relationships and engineering costs are used to explain the pattern of U.S. auto parts exports. Our results support the prediction that large scale promotes relationship-specific investment and reduces imports. Also, while Japan is a large parts importer, the composition of its imports is shifted away from parts where vertical keiretsu are prominent. Nations hosting U.S.-owned automakers import more U.S. parts.

Suggested Citation

  • Keith Head & John Ries & Barbara J. Spencer, 2002. "Vertical Networks and US Auto Parts Exports: Is Japan Different?," NBER Working Papers 9162, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9162
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gary R. Saxonhouse, 1993. "What Does Japanese Trade Structure Tell Us about Japanese Trade Policy?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 21-43, Summer.
    2. Saxonhouse, Gary R, 1976. "Estimated Parameters as Dependent Variables," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(1), pages 178-183, March.
    3. Spencer, Barbara J & Qiu, Larry D, 2001. "Keiretsu and Relationship-Specific Investment: A Barrier to Trade?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 42(4), pages 871-901, November.
    4. Qiu, Larry D. & Spencer, Barbara J., 2002. "Keiretsu and relationship-specific investment: implications for market-opening trade policy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 49-79, October.
    5. repec:fth:michin:337 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Yoshiro Miwa & J. Mark Ramseyer, 2000. "Rethinking Relationship-Specific Investments: Subcontracting in the Japanese Automobile Industry," CIRJE F-Series CIRJE-F-70, CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo.
    7. Asanuma, Banri, 1989. "Manufacturer-supplier relationships in Japan and the concept of relation-specific skill," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 1-30, March.
    8. Thomas H. Klier, 1994. "Lean manufacturing and the decision to vertically integrate: some empirical evidence from the U.S. automobile industry," Working Paper Series, Regional Economic Issues 94-1, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    9. Casadesus-Masanell, Ramon & Spulber, Daniel F, 2000. "The Fable of Fisher Body," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(1), pages 67-104, April.
    10. James E. Rauch, 2001. "Business and Social Networks in International Trade," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1177-1203, December.
    11. K.C. Fung, 1991. "Characteristics of Japanese Industrial Groups and Their Potential Impact on U. S . - Japanese Trade," NBER Chapters,in: Empirical Studies of Commercial Policy, pages 137-168 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Debaere, Peter & Lee, Hongshik & Lee, Joonhyung, 2013. "Language, ethnicity and intrafirm trade," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 244-253.
    2. Nishitateno, Shuhei, 2013. "Global production sharing and the FDI–trade nexus: New evidence from the Japanese automobile industry," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 64-80.
    3. Shuhei Nishitateno, 2015. "Network Effects on Trade in Intermediate Goods: Evidence from the Automobile Industry," The Japanese Economic Review, Japanese Economic Association, vol. 66(3), pages 354-370, September.
    4. Belderbos, René & Wakasugi, Ryuhei & Zou, Jianglei, 2012. "Business groups, foreign direct investment, and capital goods trade: The import behavior of Japanese affiliates," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 187-200.
    5. Greaney, Theresa M., 2005. "Measuring network effects on trade: Are Japanese affiliates distinctive?," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 194-214, June.
    6. Dermot Leahy & Catia Montagna, "undated". "Economising, Strategising and the Decision to Outsource," Discussion Papers 11/17, University of Nottingham, GEP.
    7. Natalia Ramondo & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 2013. "Trade, Multinational Production, and the Gains from Openness," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 121(2), pages 273-322.
    8. Nathan Nunn, 2007. "Relationship-Specificity, Incomplete Contracts, and the Pattern of Trade," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(2), pages 569-600.
    9. Robert C. Feenstra & Barbara J. Spencer, 2005. "Contractual Versus Generic Outsourcing: The Role of Proximity," NBER Working Papers 11885, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Ursino Giovanni, 2015. "Supply Chain Control: A Theory of Vertical Integration," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 15(4), pages 1831-1866, October.
    11. Head, Keith & Ries, John, 2005. "Judging Japan's FDI: The verdict from a dartboard model," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 215-232, June.
    12. Shuhei Nishitateno, 2012. "Global Production Sharing in the Japanese Automobile Industry: A Comparative Analysis," Departmental Working Papers 2012-02, The Australian National University, Arndt-Corden Department of Economics.
    13. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Lafourcade, Miren & Mayer, Thierry, 2005. "The trade-creating effects of business and social networks: evidence from France," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 1-29, May.
    14. José J. Sempere Monerris & Rafael Moner Colonques & Amparo Urbano Salvador, 2010. "Trade liberalization in vertically related markets," Working Papers. Serie AD 2010-09, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
    15. Van Assche, Ari & Schwartz, Galina A., 2010. "Input specificity and global sourcing," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 69-85, March.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations

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