Financing Constraints, Firm Dynamics, and International Trade
There is growing empirical support for the conjecture that access to credit is an important determinant of firms' export decisions. We study a multi-country general equilibrium economy in which entrepreneurs and lenders engage in long-term credit relationships. Financial constraints arise as a consequence of financial contracts that are optimal under private information. Consistent with empirical regularities, the model implies that older and larger firms have lower average and more stable growth rates, and are more likely to survive. Exporters are larger, their survival in international ...
Network Contagion and Interbank Amplification during the Great Depression
Interbank networks amplified the contraction in lending during the Great Depression. Banking panics induced banks in the hinterland to withdraw interbank deposits from Federal Reserve member banks located in reserve and central reserve cities. These correspondent banks responded by curtailing lending to businesses. Between the peak in the summer of 1929 and the banking holiday in the winter of 1933, interbank amplification reduced aggregate lending in the U.S. economy by an estimated 15 percent.
Identifying Foreign Suppliers in U.S. Import Data
Relationships between firms and their foreign suppliers are the foundation of international trade, but data limitations and reliability concerns make studying such relationships challenging. We evaluate and enhance supplier information in U.S. import data and present new facts about importer?exporter relationships. Count of foreign exporters from U.S. import data tends to exceed those from source country data, especially from China. The pattern of U.S. imports from origin countries changes substantially by tracing trade back to the supplier's location instead. Related-party relationships ...
\"It's Not You, It's Me\" : Breakups in U.S.-China Trade Relationships
Costs to switching suppliers can affect prices by discouraging buyer movements from high to low cost sellers. This paper uses confidential U.S. Customs data on U.S. importers and their Chinese exporters to investigate these costs. I find considerable barriers to supply chain adjustments: 45% of arm?s-length importers keep their partner, and one-third of switching importers remain in the same city. Guided by these regularities, I propose and structurally estimate a dynamic discrete exporter choice model. Cost estimates are large and heterogeneous across products. These costs matter for trade ...
Intermediation in Networks
I study intermediation in networked markets using a stochastic model of multilateral bargaining in which players compete on different routes through the network. I characterize stationary equilibrium payoffs as the fixed point of a set of intuitive value function equations and study efficiency and the impact of network structure on payoffs. There is never too little trade but there may be an inefficiency through too much trade in states where delay would be efficient. With homogeneous trade surplus the payoffs for players that are not essential to a trade opportunity go to zero as trade ...
Identifying Contagion in a Banking Network
We present the first micro-level evidence of the transmission of shocks through financial networks. Using the network of credit default swap (CDS) transactions between banks, we identify bank CDS returns attributable to counterparty losses. A bank's own CDS spread increases whenever counterparties from whom it has purchased default protection themselves experience losses. We find no such effect from losses of non-counterparties, nor from counterparties to whom the bank has sold protection. The effect on bank CDS returns through this counterparty loss channel is large relative to the direct ...
Payment networks in a search model of money
In a simple search model of money, we study a special kind of memory that gives rise to an arrangement resembling a payment network. Specifically, we assume that agents can pay a cost to access a central database that tracks payments made and received. Incentives must be provided to agents to access the central database and to produce when they participate in this arrangement. We also study policies that can loosen these incentive constraints. In particular, we show that a "no-surcharge" rule has good incentive properties. Finally, we compare our model with that of Cavalcanti and Wallace.
Can Reputation Discipline the Gig Economy? Experimental Evidence from an Online Labor Market
Just as employers face uncertainty when hiring workers, workers also face uncertainty when accepting employment, and bad employers may opportunistically depart from expectations, norms, and laws. However, prior research in economics and information sciences has focused sharply on the employer?s problem of identifying good workers rather than vice versa. This issue is especially pronounced in markets for gig work, including online labor markets, where platforms are developing strategies to help workers identify good employers. We build a theoretical model for the value of such reputation ...
Firm-to-Firm Relationships and the Pass-Through of Shocks: Theory and Evidence
Economists have long suspected that firm-to-firm relationships might lower the responsiveness of prices to shocks due to the use of fixed-price contracts. Using transaction-level U.S. import data, I show that the pass-through of exchange rate shocks in fact rises as a relationship grows older. Based on novel stylized facts about a relationship?s life cycle, I develop a model of relationship dynamics in which a buyer-seller pair accumulates relationship capital to lower production costs under limited commitment. The structurally estimated model generates countercyclical markups and ...
The Founding of the Federal Reserve, the Great Depression and the Evolution of the U.S. Interbank Network
Financial network structure is an important determinant of systemic risk. This paper examines how the U.S. interbank network evolved over a long and important period that included two key events: the founding of the Federal Reserve and the Great Depression. Banks established connections to correspondents that joined the Federal Reserve in cities with Fed offices, initially reducing overall network concentration. The network became even more focused on Fed cities during the Depression, as survival rates were higher for banks with more existing connections to Fed cities, and as survivors ...