Buyer-Seller Relationships in International Trade: Do Your Neighbors Matter?

Working paper 501
Author(s): 
Fariha Kamal and Asha Sundaram
Publication date: 
February, 2015
Journal: 
Journal of International Economics
Classification-JEL: 

Using confidential U.S. customs data on trade transactions between U.S. importers and Bangladeshi exporters between 2002 and 2009, and information on the geographic location of Bangladeshi exporters, we show that the presence of neighboring exporters that previously transacted with a U.S. importer is associated with a greater likelihood of matching with the same U.S. importer for the first time. This suggests a role for business networks among trading firms in generating exporter-importer matches. Our research design also allows us to isolate potential gains from neighborhood exporter presence that are partner-specific, from overall gains previously documented in the literature

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