Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Intra-good trade in Germany: A first look at the evidence

Wagner, Joachim (2016): Intra-good trade in Germany: A first look at the evidence.

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Abstract

This paper contributes to the literature by using newly released comprehensive transaction level data on all exports and imports to document facts about the amount of intra-good trade – the simultaneous export and import of identical goods by one firm - in Germany. Combined data for trade transactions and for characteristics of a representative large sample of trading firms are then used to report differences between firms that export and import different goods only (inter-good traders) and firms that engage in the simultaneous export and import of identical goods (intra-good traders). We find that the share of intra-good trade in total trade was some 17 percent in Germany in 2012. Intra-good trade matters. This share differs widely between broadly defined groups of goods and between industries. Controlling for detailed industry affiliation intra-good traders differ significantly from inter-good traders – they are larger, more human capital intensive, more productive, have a higher R&D intensity, and are more profitable. The data, however, are not rich enough to reveal the direction of causality between intra-good trade and firm performance and to investigate empirically the reasons why some firms engage in intra-good trade.

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