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The Role of Production Sharing and Trade in the Transmission of the Great Recession



The great recession of 2008-2009 resulted in a large fall in trade relative to output. Real trade fell roughly three times more than real GDP in the U.S. and Mexico, and by a factor of five in Canada. The decline in trade and output was particularly large in sectors with high levels of production sharing (goods produced in multiple, sequential stages in more than one country). Motivated by these observations, this paper asks two quantitative questions: 1) What was the role of trade in the transmission of the recession in North America? 2) What was the contribution of production sharing to the large fall in trade? To answer these questions this paper develops a quantitative open economy model of production sharing. The benchmark calibration can account for 72% of the fall in output in Canada, 19% of the fall in output in Mexico, and about two-thirds of the fall in trade for both countries. In the quantitative exercises production sharing can account for 40% of the fall in trade.

Suggested Citation

  • Jacob Wibe, 2012. "The Role of Production Sharing and Trade in the Transmission of the Great Recession," University of Western Ontario, Economic Policy Research Institute Working Papers 20123, University of Western Ontario, Economic Policy Research Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwo:epuwoc:20123

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Stockman, Alan C & Tesar, Linda L, 1995. "Tastes and Technology in a Two-Country Model of the Business Cycle: Explaining International Comovements," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 168-185, March.
    2. Julian di Giovanni & Andrei A. Levchenko, 2010. "Putting the Parts Together: Trade, Vertical Linkages, and Business Cycle Comovement," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 95-124, April.
    3. Cogley, Timothy & Nason, James M, 1995. "Output Dynamics in Real-Business-Cycle Models," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 492-511, June.
    4. Costas Arkolakis & Ananth Ramanarayanan, 2009. "Vertical Specialization and International Business Cycle Synchronization," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 111(4), pages 655-680, December.
    5. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum & Brent Neiman & John Romalis, 2016. "Trade and the Global Recession," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(11), pages 3401-3438, November.
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    JEL classification:

    • F4 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance
    • F1 - International Economics - - Trade

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