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Global Trade and GDP Co-Movement
We revisit the association between trade and GDP comovement for 135 countries from 1970 to 2009. Guided by a simple theory, we introduce two notions of trade linkages: (i) the usual direct bilateral trade index and (ii) new indexes of common exposure to third countries capturing the role of similarity in trade networks. Both measures are economically and statistically associated with GDP correlation, suggesting an additional channel through which GDP fluctuations propagate through trade linkages. Moreover, high income countries become more synchronized when the content of their trade is ...
Intangible Capital and Measured Productivity
Because ?rms invest heavily in R&D, software, brands, and other intangible assets?at a rate close to that of tangible assets?changes in measured GDP, which does not include all intangible investments, understate the actual changes in total output. If changes in the labor input are more precisely measured, then it is possible to observe little change in measured total factor productivity (TFP) coincidentally with large changes in hours and investment. This mismeasurement leaves business cycle modelers with large and unexplained labor wedges accounting for most of the ?uctuations in aggregate ...
Quantitative Trade Models: Developments and Challenges
Applied general equilibrium (AGE) models, which feature multiple countries or regions, multiple sectors, and input-output linkages across sectors in a Walrasian general equilibrium framework, have been the dominant tool for evaluating the impact of trade liberalization since the 1980s. We provide an overview of the historical development of AGE models and a guide as to how they are used to perform policy analysis. We then review and document shortcomings in the performance of AGE models in predicting the sectoral effects of past trade reforms, that is, we show that AGE models often perform ...
Value Added and Productivity Linkages Across Countries
What is the relationship between international trade and business cycle synchronization? Using data from 40 countries, we find that GDP comovement is significantly associated with trade in intermediate inputs but not with trade in final goods. Motivated by this new fact, we build a model of international trade that is able to replicate the empirical trade-comovement slope, offering the first quantitative solution for the Trade Comovement Puzzle. The model relies on (i) global value chains, (ii) price distortions due to monopolistic competition and (iii) fluctuations in the mass of firms ...