Equilibrium Effects of Firm Subsidies
- American Economic Review (Forthcoming)
Subsidy programs have two countervailing effects on firms: direct gains for eligible firms and indirect losses for those whose competitors are eligible. In 2006, India changed the eligibility criteria for small-firm subsidies, and the sales of newly eligible firms grew by roughly 35 percent. Competitors of the newly eligible firms were affected, with almost complete crowd-out within products that were less internationally traded, but little crowd-out for more-traded products. The newly eligible firms had relatively high marginal products, so relaxing the eligibility criteria for subsidies increased aggregate productivity by around 1–2 percent. Targeting different firms could have led to similar gains.
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