nep-bec New Economics Papers
on Business Economics
Issue of 2005‒12‒09
23 papers chosen by
Christian Calmes
Universite du Quebec en Outaouais

  1. Reflexivity in Teams: A Measure and Correlates By Schippers, M.; Hartog, D.N. den; Koopman, P.L.
  2. Model Averaging and Value-at-Risk Based Evaluation of Large Multi-Asset Volatility Models for Risk Management By Pesaran, M Hashem; Zaffaroni, Paolo
  3. Trusting the Stock Market By Guiso, Luigi; Sapienza, Paola; Zingales, Luigi
  4. Where Are We Now? Real-Time Estimates of the Macro Economy By Evans, Martin D.D.
  5. Optimal Delegation By Alonso, Ricardo; Matouschek, Niko
  6. Trust and Reciprocity in Incentive Contracting By Mary Rigdon
  7. Cash-Flow Risk, Discount Risk, and the Value Premium By Tano Santos; Pietro Veronesi
  8. The Effect of Firm-Level Contracts on the Structure of Wages: Evidence from Matched Employer-Employee Data By David Card; Sara de la Rica
  9. Keeping the Board in the Dark: CEO Compensation and Entrenchment By Inderst, Roman; Mueller, Holger M
  10. L'assurance de portefeuille: Simulations en Visual Basic de portefeuilles visant à reproduire les flux monétaires de stratégies d'options By Francois-Éric Racicot; Raymond Théoret
  11. Is Human Capital Losing from Outsourcing? Evidence for Austria and Poland By Lorentowicz, Andzelika; Marin, Dalia; Raubold, Alexander
  12. Labour Pooling in R&D Intensive Industries By Gerlach, Heiko A.; Roende, Thomas; Stahl, Konrad O.
  13. Skills, human capital and the plant productivity gap: UK evidence from matched plant, worker and workforce data By Haskel, Jonathan; Hawkes, Denise; Pereira, Sonia
  14. Learning to be an Entrepreneur By Guiso, Luigi; Schivardi, Fabiano
  15. The Knowledge Spillover Theory of Entrepreneurship By Acs, Zoltán J; Audretsch, David B; Braunerhjelm, Pontus; Carlsson, Bo
  16. Machine Scheduling with Resource Dependent Processing Times By Grigoriev,Alexander; Sviridenko,Maxim; Uetz,Marc
  17. A Dynamic Pricing Model for Coordinated Sales and Operations By Fleischmann, M.; Hall, J.M.; Pyke, D.F.
  18. Does Training Trigger Turnover...or Not? By Sieben,Inge
  19. The Benefits of Coaching for Employees and their Organisations By Treur, Kim A.D.; Van Der Sluis, Lidewey E.C.
  20. Do Entrenched Managers Pay Their Workers More? By Svaleryd, helena
  21. Modeling the Offshoring of White-Collar Services: From Comparative Advantage to the New Theories of Trade and FDI By James Markusen
  22. Employment Effects of the Provision of Specific Professional Skills and Techniques in Germany By Bernd Fitzenberger; Stefan Speckesser
  23. Renascent Men or Entrepreneurship as a One-Night Stand: Entrepreneurial Intentions Subsequent to Firm Exit By Audretsch, David B; Meijaard, Joris; Stam, Erik

  1. By: Schippers, M.; Hartog, D.N. den; Koopman, P.L. (Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), RSM Erasmus University)
    Abstract: Reflexivity -the extent to which teams reflect upon and modify their functioning- has been identified as a possible key factor in the effectiveness of work teams. The aim of the present study was to develop a questionnaire to measure (aspects of) reflexivity, with a focus on team reflection. The questionnaire was tested in two different samples, namely a first sample of 59 teams from fourteen different organizations (Study 1) and a confirmation sample of 59 school management teams (Study 2). In both samples, two factors of reflection were identified. These were labeled evaluation/learning and discussing processes/principles. Scale statistics showed good psychometric properties for the scales in both studies. We conclude that the scales form a parsimonious and valid instrument to assess reflexivity in teams.
    Keywords: Teams;Reflexivity;Team Learning;Questionnaire;
    Date: 2005–11–29
  2. By: Pesaran, M Hashem; Zaffaroni, Paolo
    Abstract: This paper considers the problem of model uncertainty in the case of multi-asset volatility models and discusses the use of model averaging techniques as a way of dealing with the risk of inadvertently using false models in portfolio management. Evaluation of volatility models is then considered and a simple Value-at-Risk (VaR) diagnostic test is proposed for individual as well as ‘average’ models. The asymptotic as well as the exact finite-sample distribution of the test statistic, dealing with the possibility of parameter uncertainty, are established. The model averaging idea and the VaR diagnostic tests are illustrated by an application to portfolios of daily returns based on 22 of Standard & Poor’s 500 industry group indices over the period 1995-2003. We find strong evidence in support of ‘thick’ modelling proposed in the forecasting literature by Granger and Jeon (2004).
    Keywords: decision-based evaluations; model averaging; value-at-risk
    JEL: C32 C52 C53 G11
    Date: 2005–10
  3. By: Guiso, Luigi; Sapienza, Paola; Zingales, Luigi
    Abstract: We provide a new explanation to the limited stock market participation puzzle. In deciding whether to buy stocks, investors factor in the risk of being cheated. The perception of this risk is a function not only of the objective characteristics of the stock, but also of the subjective characteristics of the investor. Less trusting individuals are less likely to buy stock and, conditional on buying stock, they will buy less. The calibration of the model shows that this problem is sufficiently severe to account for the lack of participation of some of the richest investors in the United States as well as for differences in the rate of participation across countries. We also find evidence consistent with these propositions in Dutch and Italian micro data, as well as in cross-country data.
    Keywords: portfolio choice; stock market participation; trust
    JEL: D1 D8
    Date: 2005–10
  4. By: Evans, Martin D.D.
    Abstract: This paper describes a method for calculating daily real-time estimates of the current state of the US economy. The estimates are computed from data on scheduled US macroeconomic announcements using an econometric model that allows for variable reporting lags, temporal aggregation, and other complications in the data. The model can be applied to find real-time estimates of GDP, inflation, unemployment or any other macroeconomic variable of interest. In this paper I focus on the problem of estimating the current level of and growth rate in GDP. I construct daily real-time estimates of GDP that incorporate public information known on the day in question. The real-time estimates produced by the model are uniquely suited to studying how perceived developments the macro economy are linked to asset prices over a wide range of frequencies. The estimates also provide, for the first time, daily time series that can be used in practical policy decisions.
    Keywords: forecasting GDP; Kalman filtering; real-time data
    JEL: C32 E37
    Date: 2005–10
  5. By: Alonso, Ricardo; Matouschek, Niko
    Abstract: We analyse the optimal delegation of decision rights by a uninformed principal to an informed but biased agent. When the principal cannot use message-contingent transfers, she offers the agent a set of decisions from which he can choose his preferred one. We fully characterize the optimal delegation set for general distributions of the state space and preferences with arbitrary continuous state-dependent biases. We also provide necessary and sufficient conditions for particular delegation sets to be optimal. Finally, we show that the optimal delegation set takes the form of a single interval if the agent's preferences are sufficiently similar to the principal's.
    Keywords: decision rights; delegation; mechanism design
    JEL: D82 L23
    Date: 2005–10
  6. By: Mary Rigdon (University of Michigan)
    Abstract: Principals can attempt to get agents to perform certain actions preferable to the principal by using ex post}punishments and rewards to align incentives. Field data is mixed on whether, and to what extent, such informal incentive contracting (paradoxically) crowds out efficient solutions to the agency problem. This paper explores, via a novel set of laboratory experiments, the impact of ex post incentives on informal contracts between principals and agents in bargaining environments in which there are gains from exchange and when there is an opportunity for the principal to relay a no-cost demand of the division of those gains. Incentive contracting in these environments does not crowd-out off- equilibrium cooperation, and at high incentive levels cooperation is crowded in.
    Keywords: incentives, principal-agent, bargaining, trust, cooperation, punishment, reward
    JEL: C70 C91 D63 D81
    Date: 2005–11–30
  7. By: Tano Santos; Pietro Veronesi
    Abstract: A habit persistence, general equilibrium model with multiple assets matches both the time series properties of the market portfolio and the cross-sectional predictability of returns on price sorted portfolios, the value premium. Consistent with empirical evidence, the model shows that (a) value stocks are those with higher cash-flow risk; (b) the size of the value premium is larger in “bad times,” due to time variation in risk preferences; (c) the unconditional CAPM fails, because of general equilibrium restrictions on the market portfolio. The dynamic nature of the value premium rationalizes why the conditional CAPM and a Fama and French (1993) HML factor outperform the unconditional CAPM.
    JEL: G12
    Date: 2005–12
  8. By: David Card; Sara de la Rica
    Abstract: In many European countries sectoral bargaining agreements are automatically extended to cover all firms in an industry. Employers and employees can also negotiate firm-specific contracts. We use a large matched employer-employee data set from Spain to study the effects of firm-level contracting on the structure of wages. We estimate a series of wage determination models, including specifications that control for individual characteristics, co-worker characteristics, the bargaining status of the workplace, and the probability the workplace is covered by a firm-level contract. We find that firm-level contracting is associated with a 5-10 percent wage premium, with larger premiums for more highly paid workers. Although we cannot decisively test between alternative explanations for the firm-level contracting premium, workers with firm-specific contracts have significantly longer job tenure, suggesting that the premium is at least partially a non-competitive phenomenon.
    JEL: J31 J50
    Date: 2005–12
  9. By: Inderst, Roman; Mueller, Holger M
    Abstract: We study a model in which a CEO can entrench himself by hiding information from the board that would allow the board to conclude that he should be replaced. Assuming that even diligent monitoring by the board cannot fully overcome the information asymmetry vis-à-vis the CEO, we ask if there is a role for CEO compensation to mitigate the inefficiency. Our analysis points to a novel argument for high-powered, non-linear CEO compensation such as bonus pay or stock options. By shifting the CEO’s compensation into states where the firm’s value is highest, a high-powered compensation scheme makes it as unattractive as possible for the CEO to entrench himself when he expects that the firm’s future value under his management and strategy is low. This, in turn, minimizes the severance pay needed to induce the CEO not to entrench himself, thereby minimizing the CEO’s informational rents. Amongst other things, our model suggests how deregulation and technological changes in the 1980s and 1990s might have contributed to the rise in CEO pay and turnover over the same period.
    Keywords: CEO compensation; entrenchment; severance pay; stock options
    JEL: G3
    Date: 2005–10
  10. By: Francois-Éric Racicot (Département des sciences administratives, Université du Québec (Outaouais) et LRSP); Raymond Théoret (Département de stratégie des affaires, Université du Québec (Montréal))
    Abstract: In this paper, we simulate portfolios which aim to insure the invested capital. The object of our simulations is the duplication of the cashflows of strategies based on options. We initially show how to duplicate the cash-flows of a call by using a leveraged portfolio of stocks. After, we simulate another portfolio which aims to replicate a protective put. Finally, we simulate the cushion technique of Black and analyse the sensitivity of the insured portfolio to some parameters like the degree of risk aversion of the investor. We consider the limits of each of the studied strategies.
    Keywords: Financial Engineering; Portfolio Insurance; Monte Carlo simulation.
    JEL: G12 G13 G33
    Date: 2005–11–23
  11. By: Lorentowicz, Andzelika; Marin, Dalia; Raubold, Alexander
    Abstract: Feenstra and Hanson (1997) have argued in the context of the North American Free Trade Agreement that US outsourcing to Mexico leads to an increase in the skill premium in both the US and Mexico. In this paper we show on the example of Austria and Poland that with the new international division of labour emerging in Europe Austria, the high income country, is specializing in the low skill intensive part of the value chain and Poland, the low income country, is specializing in the high skill part. As a result, skilled workers in Austria are losing from outsourcing, while gaining in Poland. In Austria, relative wages for human capital declined by 2 percent during 1995-2002 and increased by 41 percent during 1994-2002 in Poland. In both countries outsourcing contributes roughly 35 percent to these changes in the relative wages for skilled worker. Furthermore, we show that Austria's R&D policy has contributed to an increase in the skill premium there.
    Keywords: foreign direct investment; transition economics; wage inequality
    JEL: F21 F23 J31 P45
    Date: 2005–11
  12. By: Gerlach, Heiko A.; Roende, Thomas; Stahl, Konrad O.
    Abstract: We investigate firms' incentives to locate in the same region to gain access to a large pool of skilled labour. Firms engage in risky R&D activities and thus create stochastic product and implied labour demand. Agglomeration in a cluster is more likely in situations where the innovation step is large and the probability for a firm to be the only innovator is high. When firms cluster, they tend to invest more and take more risk in R&D compared to spatially dispersed firms. Agglomeration is welfare-maximizing, because expected labour productivity is higher and firms choose a more efficient, technically diversified portfolio of R&D projects at the industry level.
    Keywords: agglomeration; labour pooling; R&D
    JEL: L13 O32 R12
    Date: 2005–10
  13. By: Haskel, Jonathan; Hawkes, Denise; Pereira, Sonia
    Abstract: Using two matched plant level skills and productivity datasets for UK manufacturing we document that (i) more productive firms hire more skilled workers: in 2000, plants at the top decile of the TFP distribution (controlling for their four-digit industry) hired workers with, on average, around 1/3rd of a year of additional schooling compared to firms in the bottom decile and (ii) in an accounting sense the skills gap between the firms in the top and bottom deciles of the TFP distribution accounts for 3 to 10% of the TFP gap depending on the specification used.
    Keywords: productivity; skills
    JEL: D24 J24 L6
    Date: 2005–11
  14. By: Guiso, Luigi; Schivardi, Fabiano
    Abstract: Is entrepreneurial talent entirely innate or do people learn to become entrepreneurs? We extend Lucas's (1978) model of entrepreneurship to allow for the possibility that entrepreneurial talents may be acquired by watching other entrepreneurs in action. This model implies that areas with a greater number of firms have higher average firm productivity. We confirm this prediction using Italian firm level data. We show that the endogenous accumulation of entrepreneurial talents is a more convincing explanation for clusters of firms than heterogeneous entry costs. The evidence supports the role of learning even after controlling for other potential sources of local externalities. We also find that other specific implications of the learning mechanism are confirmed by the data.
    Keywords: agglomeration economies; clustering; entrepreneurship; learning
    JEL: D24 D62 J23
    Date: 2005–10
  15. By: Acs, Zoltán J; Audretsch, David B; Braunerhjelm, Pontus; Carlsson, Bo
    Abstract: Contemporary theories of entrepreneurship generally focus on the decision-making context of the individual. The recognition of opportunities and the decision to commercialize them is the focal concern. While the prevalent view in the entrepreneurship literature is that opportunities are exogenous, the most prevalent theory of innovation in the economics literature suggests that opportunities are endogenous. This paper bridges the gap between the entrepreneurship and economic literature on opportunity by developing a knowledge spillover theory of entrepreneurship. The basic argument is that knowledge created endogenously via R&D results in knowledge spillovers. Such spillovers give rise to opportunities to be identified and exploited by entrepreneurs. Our results show that there is a strong relationship between knowledge spillovers and new venture creation.
    Keywords: entrepreneurship; knowledge; management science; opportunity
    JEL: J24 M13 O3 R1
    Date: 2005–11
  16. By: Grigoriev,Alexander; Sviridenko,Maxim; Uetz,Marc (METEOR)
    Abstract: We consider several parallel machine scheduling settings with the objective to minimize the schedule makespan. The most general of these settings is unrelated parallel machine scheduling. We assume that, in addition to its machine dependence, the processing time of any job is dependent on the usage of a scarce renewable resource. A given amount of that resource, e.g. workers, can be distributed over the jobs in process at any time, and the more of that resource is allocated to a job, the smaller is its processing time. This model generalizes classical machine scheduling problems, adding a time-resource tradeoff. It is also a natural variant of a generalized assignment problem studied previously by Shmoys and Tardos. On the basis of integer programming formulations for relaxations of the respective problems, we use LP rounding techniques to allocate resources to jobs, and to assign jobs to machines. Combined with Graham''s list scheduling, we thus prove the existence of constant factor approximation algorithms. Our performance guarantee is 6.83 for the most general case of unrelated parallel machine scheduling. We improve this bound for two special cases, namely to 5.83 whenever the jobs are assigned to machines beforehand, and to (5+e), e>0, whenever the processing times do not depend on the machine. Moreover, we discuss tightness of the relaxations, and derive inapproximability results.
    Keywords: operations research and management science;
    Date: 2005
  17. By: Fleischmann, M.; Hall, J.M.; Pyke, D.F. (Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), RSM Erasmus University)
    Abstract: Recent years have seen advances in research and management practice in the area of pricing, and particularly in dynamic pricing and revenue management. At the same time, researchers and managers have made dramatic improvements in operations and supply chain management. The interactions between pricing and operations/supply chain performance, however, are not as well understood. In this paper, we examine this linkage by developing a deterministic, finite-horizon dynamic programming model that captures a price/demand effect as well as a stockpiling/consumption effect ? price and market stockpile influence demand, demand influences consumption, and consumption influences the market stockpile. The decision variable is the unit sales price in each period. Through the market stockpile, pricing decisions in a given period explicitly depend on decisions in prior periods. Traditional operations models typically assume exogenous demand, thereby ignoring some of the market dynamics. Herein, we model endogenous demand, and we develop analytical insights into the nature of optimal prices and promotions. We develop conditions under which the optimal prices converge to a constant. In other words, price promotion is suboptimal. We also analytically and numerically illustrate cases where the optimal prices vary over time. In particular, we show that price dynamics may be driven by both (a) revenue effects, due to nonlinear market responses to prices and/or inventory, and (b) cost effects, due to economies of scale in operations. The paper concludes with a discussion of directions for future research.
    Keywords: Dynamic pricing;Revenue management;Marketing-operations interface;
    Date: 2005–11–29
  18. By: Sieben,Inge (ROA rm)
    Abstract: This study advances on previous research on training and turnover in two ways. First, insights from the human capital perspective are contrasted with insights from the commitment perspective. Second, several aspects of training are simultaneously studied in one model: training incidence, duration, specificity, location, costs, time, and objectives. Using survey data from the ‘Higher Education and Graduate Employment in Europe’ project, I find that, in line with the human capital perspective, specific training decreases the probability to search for a new job. Moreover, it seems that training not provided by the employer and not followed during working hours induces more job search behaviour, at least for men. This could be interpreted as a negative version of the commitment perspective. After controlling for training specificity, training location, costs, and time no longer influence job search behaviour, however.
    Keywords: education, training and the labour market;
    Date: 2005
  19. By: Treur, Kim A.D. (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Faculteit der Economische Wetenschappen en Econometrie (Free University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics Sciences, Business Administration and Economitrics); Van Der Sluis, Lidewey E.C.
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to gain knowledge on the influence of coaching on the performance of employees and on the performance of their organisation as a whole. From the literature review it was expected that there would be a positive relation between the coaching styles 'friend', 'prophet' and 'expert' and the performance of the coachee and of the organisation, and a negative relation between the coaching style 'officer' and the performance of the coachee and of the organisation. From the empirical part of the study it became clear that the coaching styles prophet and friend both have a positive influence on the performance of the individual. This means that, by adopting these two styles the performance of the employee can be improved. Furthermore, the statistics show that the coaching styles expert and officer have no significant influence on the performance of the coachee; it has neither a positive influence, nor a negative one. This means that it makes no difference when a coach uses one of these styles. More specifically, it is a useless utilisation of one's time and energy when taking on one of these styles. Furthermore, it becomes clear that only the coach as a friend has a significant direct positive effect on the performance of the organisation as a whole. This means that, by adopting this style in coaching an employee, the performance of his/her organisation can be improved. The significant relation between the prophet style and individual performance has an indirect (positive) effect on the performance of the organisation as a whole. The coaching styles expert and officer have, although expected otherwise, no significant influence on organisational performance. This can be logically explained by the fact that neither of them has a significant influence on individual performance. These findings are discussed and reflected in recommendations for organisations and further research.
    Keywords: Coaching; Coaching styles; Individual performance; Organisational performance
    JEL: M12
    Date: 2005
  20. By: Svaleryd, helena (The Research Institute of Industrial Economics)
    Abstract: Based on a two-million-observation panel dataset that matches public firms with detailed data on their employees, we find that entrenched managers pay their workers more. For example, our estimates show that CEOs with more control rights (votes) than all other blockholders together, pay their workers about 6%, or $2,200 per year, higher wages. Since cash flow rights ownership by the CEO and better corporate governance are found to mitigate such behavior, we interpret the higher pay as evidence of agency problems between shareholders and managers affecting workers’ pay. The findings do not appear to be driven by endogeneity of managerial ownership and are robust to a series of robustness checks. These results are consistent with an agency model in which entrenched managers pay high wages because they come with private benefits, such as lower-effort wage bargaining and better CEO-employee relations, and suggest more broadly an important link between the corporate governance of large public firms and labor market outcomes.
    Keywords: Corporate Governance; Agency Problems; Private Benefits; Matched Employer-Employee Data; Wages
    JEL: G32 G34 J31 J33
    Date: 2005–11–28
  21. By: James Markusen
    Abstract: Trade theory consists of a portfolio of models. What elements might be useful in modeling the offshoring of white-collar services, or do these issues call for an entirely fresh approach? I try to identifying some of the important aspects of this phenomenon and then argue that modeling could focus on (a) vertical fragmentation of production, (b) expansion of trade at the extensive margin, (c) fragments that differ in factor intensities and countries that differ in endowments, and (d) knowledge or capital stocks of countries or firms that are complementary to skilled labor, and create missing inputs for countries otherwise well suited to skill-intensive fragments. I argue that we can make good progress by selecting a number of "modules" from existing theory. I use these to formulate a series of simple "template" models which capture many of the characteristics of offshoring, and then use those models to identify the effects of technological or institutional changes which allow offshoring of white-collar services to occur.
    JEL: F2
    Date: 2005–12
  22. By: Bernd Fitzenberger (Goethe University Frankfurt, ZEW, IFS and IZA Bonn); Stefan Speckesser (Policy Studies Institute London and Goethe University Frankfurt)
    Abstract: Based on unique administrative data, which has only recently become available, this paper estimates the employment effects of the most important type of public sector sponsored training in Germany, namely the provision of specific professional skills and techniques (SPST). Using the inflows into unemployment for the year 1993, the empirical analysis uses local linear matching based on the estimated propensity score to estimate the average treatment effect on the treated of SPST programs starting during 1 to 6, 7 to 12, and 13 to 24 months of unemployment. The empirical results show a negative lock{in effect for the period right after the beginning of the program and significantly positive treatment effects on employment rates of about 10 percentage points and above a year after the beginning of the program. The general pattern of the estimated treatment effects is quite similar for the three time intervals of elapsed unemployment considered. The positive effects tend to persist almost completely until the end of our evaluation period. The positive effects are stronger in West Germany compared to East Germany.
    Keywords: training program, employment effects, administrative data, matching
    JEL: C14 C23 H43 J64 J68
    Date: 2005–11
  23. By: Audretsch, David B; Meijaard, Joris; Stam, Erik
    Abstract: While a large literature has emerged focusing on nascent entrepreneurship, the propensity for ex-entrepreneurs to consider re-entering into entrepreneurship, or what we term here as renascent entrepreneurship, has been generally overlooked. According to the theory of selection and passive learning (Jovanovic, 1982), while there is a lot to be learned about the underlying but unobservable endowment of entrepreneurial skills from entering into entrepreneurship, there is virtually nothing that can be additionally learned from subsequently re-entering into entrepreneurship following termination of a previous firm. This paper suggests a different view of learning, where the entrepreneur can utilize her capacity to absorb and learn from the initial entrepreneurial experience, thereby augmenting her initial endowment of entrepreneurial skills. This leads to the theoretical prediction that those ex-entrepreneurs with characteristics more conducive to augmenting entrepreneurial abilities are more likely to become renascent entrepreneurs. Based on the empirical evidence from a database consisting of ex-entrepreneurs, we conclude that those ex-entrepreneurs with the characteristics facilitating the augmentation of entrepreneurial skills exhibit a higher propensity for becoming renascent entrepreneurs. This would suggest that there are two types of learning gained from entrepreneurship - both passive learning about the underlying endowment of entrepreneurial skills, but also active learning in that the (ex)entrepreneur learns how to do it better.
    Keywords: entrepreneurial learning; entrepreneurship; firm exit; nascent entrepreneurship; renascent entrepreneurship; restart
    JEL: J24 J23 M13
    Date: 2005–11

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