Download PDF by W. M. Scammell (auth.): International Trade and Payments

By W. M. Scammell (auth.)

ISBN-10: 1349015555

ISBN-13: 9781349015559

ISBN-10: 1349015571

ISBN-13: 9781349015573

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We are in fact perfectly entitled to assume a level of money wages in the two countries provided that the ratio of money wages between the two countries lies within a given range. The limits of this range are fixed. Since it is more convenient now to work in terms of yield than of cost let us make use of Taussig's example8 rather than try to convert the Ricardian figures. The Taussig example is as follows: In the United States: 10 days' labour produce 20 units of wheat 10 days' labour produce 20 units of linen In Germany: 10 days' labour produce 10 units of wheat 10 days' labour produce 15 units of linen The United States has an absolute advantage in both commodities but a comparative advantage in terms of wheat.

This is true only if one takes no account of transport costs. As soon as one does so it is possible to see that they have an effect upon relative prices, alter the gains from trade, reduce the volume of trade, modify economic structure and in fact influence the whole structure of comparative costs upon which trade is based. We can easily demonstrate how transport costs influence international trade by reverting to the basic diagrams used in the previous section of this chapter. Fig. 10 is an elaboration of Fig.

Indeed, a good deal of trade may be explained in this way. Climatic differences, differences in natural endowments, wide disparities in costs are all explicable in such terms. But another case arises which requires elucidation. Some countries have an across-the-board absolute advantage in the production of all commodities as compared with other countries. Is there then, as the simple model might indicate, to be no trade between them? It is likely that the United States has an across-the-board cost advantage as compared with Venezuela, yet there is trade between them.

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International Trade and Payments by W. M. Scammell (auth.)


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