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Bill of Lading Data in International Trade Research with an Application to the COVID-19 Pandemic
We evaluate high-frequency bill of lading data for its suitability in international trade research. These data offer many advantages over both other publicly accessible official trade data and confidential datasets, but they also have clear drawbacks. We provide a comprehensive overview for potential researchers to understand these strengths and weaknesses as these data become more widely available. Drawing on the strengths of the data, we analyze three aspects of trade during the COVID-19 pandemic. First, we show how the high-frequency data capture features of the within-month collapse ...