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Plant Heterogeneity and Applied General Equilibrium Models of Trade: Lessons from the CA-US FTA

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  • Michael Rolleigh

Abstract

Applied General Equilibrium models of trade failed to predict the sectoral changes in trade volumes following the Canada-US Free Trade Agreement. These models utilized a representative firm framework and used econometric estimates for the elasticities of substitution between home and foreign goods. I take a different approach on both fronts, modeling plants as heterogeneous and calibrating the elasticities to match estimated markups in each sector. I introduce these features by adapting a Hopenhayn (1992) model of plant entry and exit and embed this in a multisector trade model. The resulting model is very similar to Melitz (2003), but I focus on quantifying the effects of trade liberalization on trade flows and industrial structure. I calibrate the model using trade data between the United States and Canada before their Free Trade Agreement and evaluate the model's performance using later data. By successively shutting down various features of the model, I isolate the contribution of each. I find that calibrating the elasticities to markups improves the fit between model predictions and data significantly, from weighted correlations which are negative to values of 0.36. Incorporating plant heterogeneity and industrial data improves the weighted correlation to 0.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Rolleigh, 2004. "Plant Heterogeneity and Applied General Equilibrium Models of Trade: Lessons from the CA-US FTA," 2004 Meeting Papers 360, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed004:360
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    Cited by:

    1. James E. Anderson & Mario Larch & Yoto V. Yotov, 2015. "Growth and Trade with Frictions: A Structural Estimation Framework," CESifo Working Paper Series 5446, CESifo Group Munich.
    2. Mario Larch & Yoto V. Yotov, 2016. "General Equilibrium Trade Policy Analysis with Structural Gravity," CESifo Working Paper Series 6020, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. Carbone, Jared C. & Helm, Carsten & Rutherford, Thomas F., 2009. "The case for international emission trade in the absence of cooperative climate policy," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, pages 266-280.
    4. (Stanley) Cho, Sang-Wook & P. Díaz, Julián, 2008. "Trade Liberalization in Latin America and Eastern Europe: the Cases of Ecuador and Slovenia," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 23, pages 1002-1045.
    5. Yoto Yotov & Mario Larch & James Anderson, 2015. "Growth and Trade: A Structural Estimation Framework," 2015 Meeting Papers 851, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    6. Sang-Wook (Stanley) Cho & Juliàn P. Dìaz, 2014. "Accounting for Skill Premium Patterns during the EU Accession: Productivity or Trade?," Discussion Papers 2014-14, School of Economics, The University of New South Wales.
    7. Sang‐Wook (Stanley) Cho & Julian P. Diaz, 2011. "The Welfare Impact Of Trade Liberalization," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 49(2), pages 379-397, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    International Trade; Calibration; AGE; CGE;

    JEL classification:

    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade

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