Buyer-seller relationships in international trade: Evidence from U.S. States' exports and business-class travel
Anca Cristea ()
Journal of International Economics, 2011, vol. 84, issue 2, 207-220
International trade has become increasingly dependent on the transmission of complex information, often realized via face-to-face communication. This paper provides novel evidence for the importance of in-person business meetings in international trade. Interactions among trade partners entail a fixed cost of trade, but at the same time they generate relationship capital, which adds bilateral specific value to the traded products. Differences in the face-to-face communication intensity of traded goods, bilateral travel costs and foreign market size determine the optimal amount of interaction between trade partners. Using U.S. state level data on international business-class air travel as a measure of in-person business meetings, I find robust evidence that the demand for business-class air travel is directly related to volume and composition of exports in differentiated products. I also find that trade flows in R&D intensive manufactures and goods facing contractual frictions are most dependent on face-to-face meetings. The econometric identification exploits the cross-state variation in bilateral exports and business-class air travelers by foreign country and time period, circumventing any spurious correlation induced by cross-country differences driving aggregate travel and trade patterns.
Keywords: State; exports; Air; travel; Fixed; export; cost; Face-to-face; communication; Relationship; intensity; Tacit; knowledge (search for similar items in EconPapers)
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (41) Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only
Working Paper: Buyer-Seller Relationships in International Trade: Evidence from U.S. States' Exports and Business-Class Travel (2011)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:inecon:v:84:y:2011:i:2:p:207-220
Access Statistics for this article
Journal of International Economics is currently edited by Gourinchas, Pierre-Olivier and RodrÃguez-Clare, AndrÃ©s
More articles in Journal of International Economics from Elsevier
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Haili He ().