Research

Working papers

Demographics and the Evolution of Global Imbalances. 2021. Revised and resubmitted.
    Highlight: I build a dynamic OLG model featuring bilateral trade between 28 countries and capital accumulation. The equilibrium can be replicated by a model where each country features a representative household that experiences an endogenous discount factor. Increasing a country’s mean age by one year boosts its current account by 0.4 percent of GDP. The direction of demographic-induced capital flows correlates positively with observed bilateral trade shares.

Trade Integration, Global Value Chains, and Capital Accumulation. (With Kei-Mu Yi and Jing Zhang.) 2020. Revise and resubmit requested.
    Highlight: We incorporate capital accumulation into a two-country model with vertical specialization where upstream stages of production are capital intensive. The model gives rise to a dynamic interplay between the incentive to accumulate capital and Heckscher-Ohlin comparative advantage. This interplay generates patterns of domestic value-added content in exports that are consistent with the data and has important implications for the dynamic gains from trade

Accounting for Structural Change Over Time: A Case Study of Three Middle-Income Countries. (With Kei-Mu Yi and Jing Zhang.) 2018.
    Highlight: Structural change goes hand in hand with economic growth and development. Low income countries experience a rise in industry’s share in employment as they grow, while high income countries experience a decline. We study three middle income countries–Hungary, Portugal, and South Korea–around their peak industry employment share and find that each country has been subjected to very different forces behind their process of structural change.

Evolving Comparative Advantage, Structural Change, and the Composition of Trade. 2012.
    Highlight: South Korea experienced rapid manufacturing productivity growth during its growth miracle, relative to advanced economies. This, coupled with declining trade costs, resulted in an increase in comparative advantage and can account for much of the rise in its manufacturing employment as well as its current account dynamics. The observed structural change in most advanced economies is accounted for by domestic productivity growth and less so by trade costs.

Work In progress

A Model of Industrial Cycles Across Countries and Over Time. (With Kei-Mu Yi and Jing Zhang.)

A Quantitative Analysis of Tariffs across U.S. states. (With Ana Maria Santacreu and Jing Zhang.)

Structural Change and Deindustrialization. (With Kei-Mu Yi and Jing Zhang.)

Structural Transformation and Labor Mobility Over the Life Cycle. (With Masha Brussevich and James Lake.)

Trade Liberalization Versus Protectionism: Are the Dynamic Welfare Implications Symmetric? (With Ana Maria Santacreu.)

Published papers

Structural Change and Global Trade. (With Logan Lewis, Ryan Monarch, and Jing Zhang.) 2020.
Accepted at Journal of the European Economic Association.
    Highlight: Services are far less traded between countries compared to goods. Therefore, the process of structural change–the shift in expenditures from goods to services–makes the world appear “less open”, by restricting global trade volumes. Models that do not incorporate the endogenous response of expenditure shares to the trade regime overstate the welfare gains from trade.

Capital Accumulation and Dynamic Gains from Trade. (With B. Ravikumar and Ana Maria Santacreu.)
    Journal of International Economics, 2019, 119:93-110.
Replication files
Highlight:
We develop a gradient-free method to compute the exact transition paths for 44 countries in a model of international trade where dynamics are driven by capital accumulation and international borrowing and lending. Incorporating capital almost doubles the computed gains from trade between steady states relative to a static model. After accounting for transitional costs, the dynamic gains are about 35 percent higher than the static gains.

Evolving Comparative Advantage, Sectoral Linkages, and Structural Change.
    Journal of Monetary Economics. 2019, 103:75-87.
Appendix for supplementary material
Link to Data Appendix
    Highlight: Intermediate-input intensities vary systematically with economic development across countries. These differences explain most of the curvature in the hump shape in industry’s share in value added across levels of income per capita; Variation in the composition of final demand is about half as important.

Capital Goods Trade, Relative Prices, and Economic Development. (With Piyusha Mutreja and B. Ravikumar.)
    Review of Economic Dynamics, 2018, 27:101-122.
This paper previously circulated under the title “Capital Goods Trade and Economic Development.”
    Highlight: International trade in capital goods is quantitatively important in accounting for cross-country income differences. Trade enables poor countries access to capital goods produced in rich countries, boosting their capital stock, and also improves their TFP by allowing them to specialize in the production of non-capital goods.

Price Equalization Does Not Imply Free Trade. (With Piyusha MutrejaB. Ravikumar, and Raymond Riezman.)
   Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Review, 2015, 97(4):323-339.
    Highlight: Theoretically, there is a large number of combinations of bilateral trade barriers that are consistent with price equalization. Frictionless trade is just one possibility. Other possibilities occur when relatively unproductive countries face relatively large barriers to trade; each combination yields a uniquely different volume of trade.

Trade Barriers and the Relative Price of Tradables.
   Journal of International Economics, 2015, 96(2):398-411.
    Highlight: Prices of services (nontradables), relative to goods (tradables), covary positively with income per capita. Estimated trade barriers account for more than half of the gap in this relative price between rich and poor countries by amplifying differences in the price of nontradables, yet, have little effect on systematic differences in the price of tradables.

Price Equalization, Trade Flows, and Barriers to Trade. (With Piyusha MutrejaB. Ravikumar, and Raymond Riezman.)
   European Economic Review, 2014, 70:383-398.
    Highlight: Trade barriers in the capital goods sector must be large to reconcile the observed trade flows. Quantitatively, the pattern of trade barriers also reconciles the fact that capital goods prices are similar across countries because poor countries face larger barriers

Other Publications

Recent Developments in the Economics of Structural Change. (With Kei-Mu Yi and Jing Zhang)
    A collection of papers, with an introduction by the editors, in The International Library of Critical Writings in Economics, Edward Elgar, May 2019.

Steeling the U.S. Economy for the Impacts of Tariffs. (With Kelvinder Virdi.)
    Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Letter, April 2018, 13(5).

Brexit Through the Gift Shop: No Refunds(With Kelvinder Virdi.)
    Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Letter, December 2017, 12(15).

U.S. Productivity Growth Flowing Downstream. (With Kelvinder Virdi.)
   Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Letter, October 2016, 11(12).

Navigating the Structure of the U.S. Economy.
   Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute 2015 Annual Report, 10-17.

A Real Appreciation for Real Exchange Rate Movements. (With Kuhu Parasrampuria.)
    Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Letter, June 2015, 10(7).

Deindustrialization Redeploys Workers to Growing Service Sector. (With Valerie Grossman.)
    Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Letter, September 2014, 9(11).

Why Was the Decline in U.S. Trade Larger This Time? A Global View. (With B. Ravikumar and Lin Shao.)
    Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Regional Economist, October 2013, 21(4).

Value-Added Data Recast the U.S.-China Trade Deficit.(With Janet Koech.)
   Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Letter, July 2013, 8(5).