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Globalization and Productivity in the Developing World

  • Foellmi, Reto

    ()

  • Oechslin, Manuel

    ()

We explore the productivity impact of international trade in a monopolistically competitive economy with endogenous mark-ups due to credit market frictions. We show that reducing trade barriers in such an environment (i) may - but not necessarily must – have a negative impact on productivity and output; (ii) is bound to increase the polarization of the income distribution. The reason is that the pro-competitive effects of trade reduce mark-ups and hence the borrowing capacity of less affluent entrepreneurs. As a result, smaller firms may no longer be able to make the investments required to operate the high-productivity technology. Our findings are consistent with evidence from developing countries which (i) does not suggest a clear-cut impact of trade on economic performance; (ii) hints at an inequality-increasing effect of globalization.

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File URL: http://www1.vwa.unisg.ch/RePEc/usg/econwp/EWP-1203.pdf
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Paper provided by University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science in its series Economics Working Paper Series with number 1203.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:usg:econwp:2012:03
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  1. Bertola, Giuseppe & Lo Prete, Anna, 2010. "Whence Policy? Government Policies, Finance, and Economic Integration," CEPR Discussion Papers 7820, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Manuel Oechslin & Reto Foellmi, 2006. "Market Imperfections, Wealth Inequality, and the Distribution of Trade Gains," IEW - Working Papers 266, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  3. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
  4. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2007. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," NBER Working Papers 13290, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Joan-Maria Esteban & Debraj Ray, 1991. "On the Measurement of Polarization," Boston University - Institute for Economic Development 18, Boston University, Institute for Economic Development.
  6. Abhijit V. Banerjee & Esther Duflo, 2010. "Giving Credit Where It Is Due," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 24(3), pages 61-80, Summer.
  7. Andrew B. Bernard & Jonathan Eaton & J. Bradford Jenson & Samuel Kortum, 2000. "Plants and Productivity in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 7688, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Kiminori Matsuyama, 2005. "Credit Market Imperfections and Patterns of International Trade and Capital Flows," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 714-723, 04/05.
  9. Acemoglu, D. & Zilibotti, F., 1998. "Productivity Differences," Papers 660, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  10. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Nina Pavcnik, 2007. "Distributional Effects of Globalization in Developing Countries," NBER Working Papers 12885, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Timothy J. Kehoe & Kim J. Ruhl, 2010. "Why have economic reforms in Mexico not generated growth?," Staff Report 453, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  12. Mark J. Melitz, 2002. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," NBER Working Papers 8881, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Epifani, Paolo & Gancia, Gino A, 2009. "Trade, Markup Heterogeneity and Misallocations," CEPR Discussion Papers 7217, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2009. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(4), pages 1403-1448.
  15. Ottaviano, Gianmarco & Melitz, Marc, 2008. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," Scholarly Articles 3229096, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  16. Kjetil Storesletten & Fabrizio Zilibotti & Zheng Song, 2009. "Growing like China," 2009 Meeting Papers 912, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  17. Anthony Atkinson & Thomas Piketty & Emmanuel Saez, 2011. "Top Incomes in the Long Run of History," Post-Print halshs-00754557, HAL.
  18. Rodrik, Dani, 2010. "Diagnostics Before Prescription," Scholarly Articles 8057678, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
  19. Andrew Warner, 2003. "Once More into the Breach: Economic Growth and Integration," Working Papers 34, Center for Global Development.
  20. Banerjee, Abhijit V. & Duflo, Esther, 2005. "Growth Theory through the Lens of Development Economics," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 473-552 Elsevier.
  21. David N. DeJong & Marla Ripoll, 2006. "Tariffs and Growth: An Empirical Exploration of Contingent Relationships," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(4), pages 625-640, November.
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