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The paper investigates the role of global supply chains in explaining the trade collapse of 2008-2009 and the long-term variations observed in trade elasticity. Building on the empirical results obtained from a subset of input-output matrices and the exploratory analysis of a large and diversified sample of countries, a formal model is specified to measure the respective short-term and long-term dynamics of trade elasticity. The model is then used to formally probe the role of vertical integration in explaining changes in trade elasticity. Aggregated results on long-term trade elasticity tend to support the hypothesis that world economy has undertaken in the late 1980s a "Traverse" between two underlying economic models.
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