Data Website

for Hummels, David, "Transportation Costs and International Trade in the Second Era of Globalization", Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol 21, No 3, pp 131-154.

Data Figures and Tables in the Paper



Details on Construction of the dataset


These data come from annual Imports of Merchandise CDs provided by the Census bureau.  Full details on

this set of CD's can be found here...


The particular database employed in each year from those CD's is IMP_DETL.DBF


The file below takes these data and does the following transformations

1.  Data are concorded from TSUSA -> SITC Rev 2   or from HS -> SITC Rev 2, depending on the year

2.  Data are aggregated across product codes and entry ports so that there is a single observation for each exporter x SITC2 product



The specific data are below


Contains data from\sitcreallysmall_allyears.dta

  obs:     1,388,675                         

 vars:            15                          9 Mar 2006 10:52

 size:   154,142,925 (70.6% of memory free)


              storage  display     value

variable name   type   format      label      variable label


ctry            int    %10.0g                 Census country subcode

sitc2           str5   %9s                    SITC Rev 2, 5 digit

con_qy1         double %10.0g                 Imports for Consumption, 1st Unit of Quantity

con_qy2         double %10.0g                 Imports for Consumption, 2nd Unit of Quantity

con_val         double %10.0g                 Imports for Consumption, Customs Value

ves_val         double %10.0g                 Shipments by Ocean Vessel, Customs Value

air_val         double %10.0g                 Shipments by Air, Customs Value

con_cha         double %10.0g                 Imports for Consumption,Import Charges (Freight)

ves_cha         double %10.0g                 Shipments by Ocean Vessel, Import Charges (Freight)

air_cha         double %10.0g                 Shipments by Air, Import Charges (Freight)

air_wgt         double %10.0g                 Shipments by Air, Shipping Weight (KG)

ves_wgt         double %10.0g                 Shipments by Ocean Vessel, SHipping Weight (KG)

duty            double %10.0g                 Import Duties

rec             double %12.0g                 NUmber of Detailed Records

yr              float  %9.0g                           Year             




Additional Supporting Data

Modal Quantities

sea transport growth statistics.xls

IATA air transport growth statistics.xls


Modal Prices

bls air price indices.xls  (Bureau of Labor Statistics index number price data on air passenger and air freight)

icao data.xls    (International Civil Aviation Organization data on air fares and air freights by international region 1973-1993)

ocean price indices.xls   (Various index numbers for ocean shipping prices from 1948 onward)

per commodity ad-valorem rates.xls  (liner shipping rates for specific commodities 1963-2004)