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Off the cliff and back? Credit conditions and international trade during the global financial crisis

Davin Chor () and Kalina Manova

Journal of International Economics, 2012, vol. 87, issue 1, 117-133

Abstract: We study the collapse of international trade flows during the global financial crisis using detailed data on monthly US imports. We show that credit conditions were an important channel through which the crisis affected trade volumes, by exploiting the variation in the cost of capital across countries and over time, as well as the variation in financial vulnerability across sectors. Countries with higher interbank rates and thus tighter credit markets exported less to the US during the peak of the crisis. This effect was especially pronounced in sectors that require extensive external financing, have limited access to trade credit, or have few collateralizable assets. Exports of financially vulnerable industries were thus more sensitive to the cost of external capital than exports of less vulnerable industries, and this sensitivity rose during the financial crisis. The quantitative implications of our estimates for trade volumes highlight the large real effects of financial crises and the potential gains from policy intervention.

Keywords: International trade; Financial crisis; Credit constraints; Trade finance; Trade credit (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F10 F14 F42 G01 G20 G28 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2012
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Related works:
Chapter: Off the Cliff and Back? Credit Conditions and International Trade during the Global Fnancial Crisis (2010)
Working Paper: Off the Cliff and Back? Credit Conditions and International Trade during the Global Financial Crisis (2010) Downloads
Working Paper: Off the Cliff and Back? Credit Conditions and International Trade during the Global Financial Crisis (2010) Downloads
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