NBER Working Papers by Javier Cravino

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Working Papers

August 2016Multinational Firms and International Business Cycle Transmission
with Andrei A. Levchenko: w22498
We investigate how multinational firms contribute to the transmission of shocks across countries using a large multi-country firm-level dataset that contains cross-border ownership information. We use these data to document two novel empirical patterns. First, foreign affiliate and headquarter sales exhibit strong positive comovement: a 10% growth in the sales of the headquarter is associated with a 2% growth in the sales of the affiliate. Second, shocks to the source country account for a significant fraction of the variation in sales growth at the source-destination level. We propose a parsimonious quantitative model to interpret these findings and to evaluate the role of multinational firms for international business cycle transmission. For the typical country, the impact of foreign sho...
January 2012Measured Aggregate Gains from International Trade
with Ariel Burstein: w17767
Do theoretical welfare gains from trade translate into aggregate measures of economic activity? We calculate the changes in real GDP and real consumption that result from changes in trade costs in a range of workhorse trade models, following the procedures outlined by statistical agencies in the United States. Our main findings are as follows: First, real GDP and measured aggregate productivity rise in response to reductions in variable trade costs if GDP deflators capture the decline in trade costs. Second, with balanced trade in each country, changes in world real consumption and changes in world real GDP (i.e.: weighting the change in each country by its nominal GDP) in response to changes in variable trade costs coincide, up to a first-order approximation, with changes in world theoret...

Published: Ariel Burstein & Javier Cravino, 2015. "Measured Aggregate Gains from International Trade," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(2), pages 181-218, April. citation courtesy of

September 2011Importing Skill-Biased Technology
with Ariel Burstein, Jonathan Vogel: w17460
Capital equipment - such as computers and industrial machinery - embodies skill-biased technology, in the sense that it is complementary to skilled labor. Most countries import a large share of their capital equipment, and by doing so import skill-biased technology. In this paper we develop a tractable quantitative model of international trade in capital goods to quantify the extent to which trade, through capital-skill complementarity, raises the relative demand for skill and hence increases the skill premium. In one counterfactual, we find that moving from the trade levels observed in the year 2000 to autarky would decrease the skill premium by 16% in the median country in our sample, by 5% in the US, and by a much larger magnitude in countries that heavily rely on imported capital equip...

Published: Ariel Burstein & Javier Cravino & Jonathan Vogel, 2013. "Importing Skill-Biased Technology," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 32-71, April. citation courtesy of

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