The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd

Gains from Trade

  • Murray C. Kemp
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-349-95189-5_870

Abstract

Questions relating to the gainfulness or otherwise of international trade and investment have always interested economists, from Adam Smith to the present day. We now have at our disposal a very large arsenal of propositions concerning the trading gains of single countries and of groups of countries under alternative institutional arrangements. However, most of these propositions relate to the limiting case of small countries. For example, much ingenuity has been expended in tracking the welfare implications of autonomous changes in the world prices faced by a small country or in the vector of tariffs imposed by such a country. Evidently the fruits of such investigations are of only modest general interest. Here we concentrate on two propositions which are valid for economies of any size and which are of considerable historical and intellectual interest. For an accurate summary of small-country results, and for the relevant references to the literature, see Woodland (1982, chs 9 and 11).

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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Murray C. Kemp
    • 1
  1. 1.