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  • Open Access

Adjustment Dynamics of Bilateral Trade Flows: Theory and Evidence

Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics2009145:BF03399289

  • Published:


In this paper, I introduce a trade-promoting ‘invisible asset’ into the standard Krugman (1980) model of international trade. It can be interpreted as trust that accumulates as an externality in proportion to successful international transactions. I use this framework to theoretically derive a dynamic gravity equation and to discuss adjustment dynamics. I provide new evidence on adjustment rates of bilateral trade flows. On average, 23% of the gap to the steady-state trade flow are closed each year. However, dynamic regressions yield long-run trade policy effects which are comparable to static estimates.


  • F14
  • F15


  • international bilateral trade
  • gravity model
  • trust
  • dynamic panel data