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O’Sullivan, Sheffrin, Perez
Economics: Principles and Tools
Factor Endowments
and the Commodity
Composition of Trade
Copyright © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. Publishing as Prentice Hall.
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The Factor-Proportions Theorem
A country will have a comparative advantage
and export goods whose production intensively
uses its relatively abundant factor of
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The Factor-Price Equalization Theorem
International trade will tend to equalize or
reduce differences in factor prices between
Before trade, the abundant factor
commands a lower return. After trade,
industries with the abundant factor will
expand, the demand for the abundant
factor will rise, and its price will increase.
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The Stolper-Samuelson Theorem
International trade will reduce the income of
the scarce factor of production and increase
the income of the abundant factor of
production within a country.
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Revealed Comparative Advantage
One way of determining a country’s
comparative advantage is to see if it has a
trade surplus of a good or service.
Revealed Comparative Disadvantage
One way of determining a country’s
comparative disadvantage is to see if the
country exports less than it imports of a good
or service.
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The Leontief Paradox
An empirical finding that U.S. industries with
trade surpluses were more labor intensive than
U.S. industries with trade deficits. This is
contrary to the factor-proportions theory.
Explanations of the Leontief Paradox
Leontief assumed that labor is homogeneous.
Most of the U.S. labor force is highly skilled or
possesses human capital. U.S. exports
appear to be human-capital intensive.
U.S. exports are also intensive in technology.
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