Review of World Economics

, Volume 149, Issue 1, pp 113–130 | Cite as

Exports, imports and firm survival: first evidence for manufacturing enterprises in Germany

  • Joachim WagnerEmail author
Original Paper


This paper investigates the links between firm survival and three types of international trade activities—exports, imports and two-way trade. It uses unique new representative data for manufacturing enterprises from Germany, one of the leading actors on the world market for goods. The paper contributes to the literature by providing the first evidence on the role of imports and two-way trading for firm survival in a highly developed country. The result indicate a strong positive link between firm survival on the one hand and imports and two-way trading on the other hand, while exporting alone does not play a role for exiting the market or not.


Exports Imports Firm survival 

JEL Classification




I thank the German Research Foundation for financial support under project WA 610/5-1 “Firm exit” (Betriebsschließungen). Comments from participants at these presentations, from Claus Schnabel and Daniel Fackler and from two referees are gratefully acknowledged. Special thanks go to Julia Höninger and Florian Köhler for pointing out problems related to the identification of firm exits with the turnover tax statistics data; their comments lead to a complete revision of an earlier version that circulates as a working paper, see Wagner (2011b). The usual disclaimer applies.

Supplementary material

10290_2012_141_MOESM1_ESM.docx (17 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 16 kb)


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Copyright information

© Kiel Institute 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of EconomicsLeuphana University LueneburgLueneburgGermany
  2. 2.IZABonnGermany

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