A Model of Countertrade

38 Pages Posted: 11 Jul 2008

See all articles by Tore Ellingsen

Tore Ellingsen

Stockholm School of Economics - Department of Economics; Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics

Date Written: March 1991


Countertrade - or reciprocal buying - is defined as a transaction involving (at least) a two-way transfer of goods, rather than a singular transfer of goods for money. The main objective of this paper is to explain the extensive use of countertrade both between countries and between firms within one country. In a simple game-theoretic model it is shown that countertrade may be a rational business strategy for firms with buying power, and that the impact on welfare is negative, even in the case where no firm exists. The model is consistent with the observations that countertrade occurs mainly in homogeneous goods industries, that trades are relatively balanced and that the practice is more widespread during recessions than during booms.

Suggested Citation

Ellingsen, Tore, A Model of Countertrade (March 1991). LSE STICERD Research Paper No. EI03, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1158283

Tore Ellingsen (Contact Author)

Stockholm School of Economics - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 6501
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S-113 83 Stockholm
+46 8 736 9260 (Phone)
+46 8 31 3207 (Fax)

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics

Helleveien 30
N-5035 Bergen

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