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Product Heterogeneity, Intangible Barriers & Distance Decay: The effect of multiple dimensions of distance on trade across different product categories

  • Maureen Lankhuizen

    ()

  • Thomas De Graaff
  • Henri De Groot

This paper empirically examines the heterogeneity in the effects of multiple dimensions of distance on trade across detailed product groups. Using finite mixture modelling on bilateral trade data at the 3-digit SITC level, we endogenously group product categories into an, a priori unknown, number of segments based on estimated coefficients of multiple dimensions of distance in the gravity equation. The paper contributes to the literature by offering a new classification of products into homogeneous groups. We find that distance decay functions in a gravity model of international trade at a disaggregate level reveal a complex process that involve location characteristics (comparative and natural advantages, demand patterns or preferences) as well as intrinsic sensitivity of trade to multiple dimensions of distance. Keywords: bilateral trade, gravity models, cultural distance, institutions, product heterogeneity, finite mixture modelling JEL code: F14, F21, F23

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File URL: http://www-sre.wu.ac.at/ersa/ersaconfs/ersa12/e120821aFinal00153.pdf
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Paper provided by European Regional Science Association in its series ERSA conference papers with number ersa12p151.

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Date of creation: Oct 2012
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Handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwrsa:ersa12p151
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  1. James E. Anderson & Eric van Wincoop, 2003. "Gravity with Gravitas: A Solution to the Border Puzzle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 170-192, March.
  2. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth Rogoff, 2001. "The Six Major Puzzles in International Macroeconomics: Is There a Common Cause?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2000, Volume 15, pages 339-412 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
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  5. Henri L. F. de Groot & Gert-Jan Linders & Piet Rietveld & Uma Subramanian, 2004. "The Institutional Determinants of Bilateral Trade Patterns," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(1), pages 103-123, 02.
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  8. Jeroen Hinloopen & Charles van Marrewijk, 2012. "Power laws and comparative advantage," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(12), pages 1483-1507, April.
  9. Anne-Célia Disdier & Keith Head, 2004. "The Puzzling Persistence of the Distance Effect on Bilateral Trade," Development Working Papers 186, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
  10. Robert C. Feenstra & Robert E. Lipsey & Haiyan Deng & Alyson C. Ma & Hengyong Mo, 2005. "World Trade Flows: 1962-2000," NBER Working Papers 11040, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. James E. Rauch, 1996. "Networks versus Markets in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 5617, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. James E. Anderson & Douglas Marcouiller, S.J., 1999. "Insecurity and the Pattern of Trade: An Empirical Investigation," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 418, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 03 Aug 2000.
  13. Alan V Deardorff, 2004. "Local Comparative Advantage: Trade Costs and the Pattern of Trade," Working Papers 500, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  14. Maureen Lankhuizen & Henri L. F. de Groot & Gert‐Jan M. Linders, 2011. "The Trade‐Off between Foreign Direct Investments and Exports: The Role of Multiple Dimensions of Distance," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(8), pages 1395-1416, 08.
  15. Friedrich Leisch, . "FlexMix: A General Framework for Finite Mixture Models and Latent Class Regression in R," Journal of Statistical Software, American Statistical Association, vol. 11(i08).
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