DP1568 Structural Change and International Trade

Author(s): Dan Ben-David, David Papell
Publication Date: February 1997
Keyword(s): International Trade, Structural Breaks
JEL(s): C22, F1
Programme Areas: International Trade and Regional Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=1568

This paper examines trends in trade behaviour of 48 countries since the Second World War. In light of the substantial movement towards removal of trade impediments world-wide during the post-war period, this paper attempts to determine if, and when, countries experienced significant changes in the paths of their export-GDP and import-GDP ratios. We find that: (1) the time-paths of the trade ratios in most countries exhibit a structural break during the post-war period; (2) the extent of trade following the breaks exceeded the pre-break trade levels for the majority of countries; (3) the relationship between the timing of the break for imports and the timing of the break for exports is not particularly strong; and (4) there is little relation between the extent of the post-break to pre-break changes in imports and the post-break to pre-break changes in exports for most countries.