Robert C. Feenstra

Robert C. Feenstra is Professor of Economics and C. Bryan Cameron Distinguished Chair in International Economics at the University of California, Davis. He directs the International Trade and Investment Program at the NBER and is the author of Advanced International Trade: Theory and Evidence and Offshoring in the Global Economy: Microeconomic Structure and Macroeconomic Implications (MIT Press, 2010).

  • Product Variety and the Gains from International Trade

    Product Variety and the Gains from International Trade

    Robert C. Feenstra

    An examination of the methods to measure the product variety of imports and the gains from trade due to product variety.

    The application of the monopolistic competition model to international trade by Elhanan Helpman, Paul Krugman, and Kelvin Lancaster was one of the great achievements of international trade theory in the 1970s and 1980s. Monopolistic competition models have required new empirical methods to implement their theoretical insights, however, and in this book Robert Feenstra describes methods that have been developed to measure the product variety of imports and the gains from trade that are due to product variety.

    Feenstra first considers the consumer benefits from having access to new import varieties of differentiated products, and examines a recent method to estimate the elasticity of substitution (the extent of differentiation across products) and to use that information to construct the gains from import variety. He then examines claims of producer benefit from export variety, arguing that the self-selection of the more productive firms (as the low-productivity firms exit the market) can be interpreted as a gain from product variety. He makes use of a measurement of product variety known as the extensive margin of exports and imports. Finally, he considers an alternative approach to quantifying the gains due to product variety by comparing real GDP calculated with and without the extensive margin of trade.

    • Hardcover $35.00
  • Offshoring in the Global Economy

    Offshoring in the Global Economy

    Microeconomic Structure and Macroeconomic Implications

    Robert C. Feenstra

    An elegant synthesis of key research on the globalization of production and its relation to wage movements.

    In the early 1990s, trade and labor economists, noting the fall in wages for low-skilled workers relative to high-skilled workers, began to debate the impact of trade on wages. This debate—which led to a sometimes heated exchange on the role of trade versus the role of technological change in explaining wage movements—continues today, with the focus now shifting to workers in the middle of the wage distribution. In Offshoring in the Global Economy, noted economist Robert Feenstra offers a synthesis of fifteen years of research—linking his own work to related research by others—on the globalization of production and its relation to wage movements. Feenstra first contrasts the views of trade economists Paul Krugman and Edward Leamer, who both relied (to different ends) on the Heckscher–Ohlin model. He then examines the new type of trade models focusing on the transfer of production processes across countries. Feenstra suggests a new calculation of the factor content of trade that demonstrates the durability of the Heckscher–Ohlin model. Feenstra then examines the macroeconomics of offshoring, focusing on business cycle volatility, prices, and productivity. Finally, he discusses the broader implications of both empirical and theoretical work on offshoring and suggests directions for future research.

    • Hardcover $35.00
  • The Political Economy of Trade Policy

    The Political Economy of Trade Policy

    Papers in Honor of Jagdish Bhagwati

    Robert C. Feenstra, Gene M. Grossman, and Douglas A. Irwin

    This collection of papers by former students and colleagues celebrates the profound impact that Jagdish Bhagwati has had on the field of international economics over the past three decades. Bhagwati, who is the Arthur Lehman Professor of Economics at Columbia University, has made pathbreaking contributions to the theory of international trade and commercial policy, including immiserizing growth, domestic distortions, economic development, and political economy. His success and influence as a teacher and mentor is widely recognized among students at both MIT and Columbia, and as founder of the Journal of International Economics, he has encouraged research on many questions of theoretical and policy relevance. The political economy of trade policy, Bhagwati's most recent area of interest, is the theme of this collection which addresses salient topics including market distortions, income distribution, and the political process of policy-making.

    Sections and ContributorsMarket Distortions, T. N. Srinivasan. Paul A. Samuelson. Paul R. Krugman • Trade and Income Distribution, Douglas A. Irwin. Richard A. Brecher and Ehsan U. Choudri. Robert C. Feenstra and Gordon H. Hanson. Earl L. Grinols • Perspectives on Political Economy, Robert E. Baldwin. Peter Diamond • Models of Political Economy and Trade, Gene M. Grossman and Elhana Helpman. John Douglas Wilson. B. Peter Rosendorff. Arvind Panagariya and Ronald Findlay

    • Hardcover $55.00
  • Empirical Methods for International Trade

    Empirical Methods for International Trade

    Robert C. Feenstra

    A wide range of empirical studies is applied to various countries in this important collection. Bringing together the most recent work in econometrics applied to international trade, main sections of the book cover: cross-country analysis, which can be used to test assumptions or implications of trade models; industry studies, which are receiving renewed interest in recent literature on market structure and trade; and dual methods, which extend the estimation of production and cost functions to incorporate trade flows.

    Following the editor's introduction, relating the theory of international trade to empirical applications, are contributions by Richard A. Brecher and Ehsan U. Choudhri, The Factor Content of Consumption in Canada and the United States: A Two-Country Test of the Heckscher-Ohlin-Vanek Model. David Dollar, Edward N. Wolff, and William J. Baumol, The Factor-Price Equalization Model and Industry Labor Productivity: An Empirical Test Across Countries. Edward E. Learner, Cross Section Estimation of the Effects of Trade Barriers. Linda C. Hunter and James R. Markusen, Per-Capita Income as Determinant of Trade. Robert C. Feenstra, Gains from Trade in Differentiated Products: Japanese Compact Trucks. Avinash Dixit, Optimal Trade and Industrial Policies for the U.S. Autombile Industry. Richard E. Baldwin and Paul R. Krugman, Market Access and International Competition: A Simulation Study of 16K Random Access Memories. W. Erwin Diewert and Catherine J. Morrison, Export Supply and Import Demand Functions: A Production Theory Approach. Karyiu Wong, International Factor Mobility and the Volume of Trade: An Empirical Study. Bee Yan Aw and Mark J. Roberts, Price and Quality Level Comparison for U.S. Footware Imports: An Application of Multilateral Index Numbers. Alexandra Cas, W. Erwin Diewert, and Lawrence A. Ostensoe, Productivity Growth and Changes in the Terms of Trade in Canada.

    • Hardcover $42.00
    • Paperback $45.00