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Market Penetration Costs and Trade Dynamics

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  • Costas Arkolakis

    (Yale University)

Abstract

I introduce trade dynamics into a static model of international trade with product differentiation, heterogeneous productivity firms, and increasing marginal market penetration costs. I interpret firms as ideas that materialize into production, where an idea is a way to produce a differentiated good with a given productivity. Adapting a stochastic process similar to Reed, the model endogenously generates a right tail cross-sectional Pareto distribution of firms’ productivities based on two minimal assumptions: continuous entry of ideas at a certain rate and productivities of ideas that evolve according to a geometric Brownian motion. The cross-sectional predictions of the model for the distribution of domestic and exporting sales of firms are in line with firm-level data. In addition, the model delivers new predictions consistent with panel data observations on domestic and exporting firm-level sales. It predicts that many small firms enter and exit the market very frequently and that the growth rate as well as the variance of the growth rate of sales is higher for small firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Costas Arkolakis, 2008. "Market Penetration Costs and Trade Dynamics," 2008 Meeting Papers 548, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed008:548
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    Cited by:

    1. Gregory Corcos & Massimo Del Gatto & Giordano Mion & Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano, 2012. "Productivity and Firm Selection: Quantifying the ‘New’ Gains from Trade," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(561), pages 754-798, June.
    2. Ina Simonovska, 2009. "Income Differences and Prices of Tradables," 2009 Meeting Papers 692, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    3. Tomás Castagnino, 2011. "What Drives firms´ Geographic Diversification in International Markets?," BCRA Working Paper Series 201152, Central Bank of Argentina, Economic Research Department.
    4. Besedes, Tibor & Prusa, Thomas J., 2011. "The role of extensive and intensive margins and export growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 371-379, November.
    5. Ina Simonovska, 2015. "Income Differences and Prices of Tradables: Insights from an Online Retailer," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 82(4), pages 1612-1656.
    6. Hallak, Juan Carlos & Sivadasan, Jagadeesh, 2008. "Productivity, quality and exporting behavior under minimum quality constraints," MPRA Paper 24146, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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