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Host Country Financial Development and MNC Activity

  • Davin Chor

    ()

    (School of Economics, Singapore Management University)

We present evidence that the level of financial development in FDI recipient countries systematically affects the spatial distribution of multinational corporations' (MNCs) sales. Using detailed proprietary survey data collected by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) on US multinationalactivity abroad, we find that stronger financial development in the host country has a negative effect on the share of MNC affiliate sales that remain in the host country, indicating a reduced propensity towards horizontal FDI. Conversely, the share of affiliate sales that is re-exported to third-country destinations increases, suggesting an increased propensity towards export-platform FDI. We provide a three-country model with heterogenous firms that rationalizes these observations: More financially developed host countries foster entry by domestic firms, making the local market more competitive for MNC products. This leads MNCs to orient their affiliates away from servicing the local market towards third-country markets instead.

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Paper provided by Singapore Management University, School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 12-2008.

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Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in SMU Economics and Statistics Working Paper Series
Handle: RePEc:siu:wpaper:12-2008
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  1. Hummels, David & Ishii, Jun & Yi, Kei-Mu, 2001. "The nature and growth of vertical specialization in world trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 75-96, June.
  2. Bruce A. Blonigen, 2005. "A Review of the Empirical Literature on FDI Determinants," NBER Working Papers 11299, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Markusen, James R. & Venables, Anthony J., 2000. "The theory of endowment, intra-industry and multi-national trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 209-234, December.
  4. Robert E. Lipsey, 2001. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Operations of Multinational Firms: Concepts, History, and Data," NBER Working Papers 8665, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  6. Helpman, Elhanan, 1984. "A Simple Theory of International Trade with Multinational Corporations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(3), pages 451-71, June.
  7. Pol Antràs & Mihir A. Desai & C. Fritz Foley, 2009. "Multinational Firms, FDI Flows, and Imperfect Capital Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 124(3), pages 1171-1219, August.
  8. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman & Adam Szeidl, 2003. "Optimal Integration Strategies for the Multinational Firm," Working Papers 142, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Discussion Papers in Economics..
  9. Markusen, James R., 1984. "Multinationals, multi-plant economies, and the gains from trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3-4), pages 205-226, May.
  10. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1998. "Law and Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(6), pages 1113-1155, December.
  11. Ekholm, Karolina & Forslid, Rikard & Markusen, James R., 2003. "Export-Platform Foreign Direct Investment," CEPR Discussion Papers 3823, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Agnès Bénassy-Quéré & Maylis Coupet & Thierry Mayer, 2007. "Institutional Determinants of Foreign Direct Investment," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-00268751, HAL.
  13. Choi, E. Kwan & Harrigan, James, 2003. "Handbook of International Trade," Staff General Research Papers 11375, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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