nep-bec New Economics Papers
on Business Economics
Issue of 2014‒12‒08
ten papers chosen by
Vasileios Bougioukos
Bangor University

  1. Corporate Social Communication and Corporate Social Performance By Ziggers, Gerrit Willem
  2. Outside Purchase Contracts, Human Capital and Firm Capital Structure By S. Katie Moon; Gordon M. Phillips
  3. The appeals process: An empirical assessment By Hüschelrath, Kai; Smuda, Florian
  4. Allocation of human capital and innovation at the frontier: Firm-level evidence on Germany and the Netherlands By Bartelsmann, Eric; Dobbelaere, Sabien; Peters, Bettina
  5. Verti-zontal differentiation in export markets By Di Comite, Francesco; Thisse, Jacques-François; Vandenbussche, Hylke
  6. The Propagation of Industrial Business Cycles By Maximo Camacho; Danilo Leiva-Leon
  7. Permission to Exist By Martin C. Byford; Joshua S. Gans
  8. Appropriability Mechanisms, Innovation and Productivity: Evidence from the UK By Bronwyn H. Hall; Vania Sena
  9. Innovation in creative cities: Evidence from British small firms By Neil Lee; Andrés Rodríguez-Pose
  10. Earnings and Employment in Foreign-Owned Firms By Maré, Dave C.; Sanderson, Lynda; Fabling, Richard

  1. By: Ziggers, Gerrit Willem
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to provide firms in the food and agricultural sector a model that enables them to assess their corporate social initiatives in conjunction with their stakeholders. Building on the concepts of corporate social responsibility (CSR), corporate social performance (CSP) and the relational view the paper argues that firms can improve the results of their corporate social initiatives by setting up a dialogue with their stakeholders and to relate this to their internal organizational delivery system. The CSP model is based on the SERVQUAL methodology. The model addresses how a potential (mis)match between a firm’s CSR initiative and stakeholders expectations and experiences is related to four gaps in the firm’s internal organizational delivery system and how this effects the firm’s CSP. CSP measurement is a fundamental part of a firm’s strategy if one accepts the tenet that firm survival and growth depends on the ability of firms to meet the needs of their stakeholders and to manage corporate image. It is to the firm to make stakeholder’s expectations transparent and plan action in alignment with the firm’s business strategy. The paper contributes to a more comprehensive understanding of CSP measurement by linking a firm’s CSP to the firm’s delivery system. It addresses how CSP can evolve over time by putting the dialogue with stakeholders central.
    Keywords: SERVQUAL, Corporate Social Responsibility, relational capabilities, Corporate Social Performance, Agribusiness, Agricultural and Food Policy, Institutional and Behavioral Economics,
    Date: 2013–09
  2. By: S. Katie Moon; Gordon M. Phillips
    Abstract: We examine the impact of outside purchase contracts on firm risk and firm capital structure. We find that firms with more outside purchase contracts have less risky cash flows. Despite these less risky cash flows, firms with these contracts also have less financial leverage especially when they operate in high value-added industries. Examining firm financing decisions, we document that firms with more outside contracts are more likely to issue private securities. Our results are consistent with firms with more outside purchase contracts using less leverage to decrease the expected costs of financial distress on their explicit and implicit contracting parties.
    JEL: G31 G32 L1 L22 L23 L24
    Date: 2014–10
  3. By: Hüschelrath, Kai; Smuda, Florian
    Abstract: The appeals process - whereby the losing party of an administrative or judicial decision can seek reconsideration of their arguments before a higher institution - is an important mechanism to correct legal errors and to improve existing laws and regulations. We use data of 467 firm groups that participated in 88 cartels convicted by the European Commission between 2000 and 2012 to study both the characteristics of firm groups filing an appeal and the factors that determine their successfulness in terms of fine reduction. Applying discrete choice models and a two-stage hurdle model, we find that while some characteristics - such as the size and financial condition of the firm group or the clarity of fine guidelines - only affect the probability to file an appeal, other factors such as the size of the fine imposed in connection to characteristics as ringleader, repeat offender or leniency applicant influence both the probability and the success of an appeal. We take our empirical results to derive conclusions for both firms and public policy makers.
    Keywords: Law and Economics,appeals,antitrust policy,cartels,European Union
    JEL: K21 K41 K42 L41
    Date: 2014
  4. By: Bartelsmann, Eric; Dobbelaere, Sabien; Peters, Bettina
    Abstract: This paper examines how productivity effects of human capital and innovation vary at different points of the conditional productivity distribution. Our analysis draws upon two large unbalanced panels of 6,634 enterprises in Germany and 14,586 enterprises in the Netherlands over the period 2000-2008, considering 5 manufacturing and services industries that differ in the level of technological intensity. Industries in the Netherlands are characterized by a larger average proportion of high-skilled employees and industries in Germany by a more unequal distribution of human capital intensity. In Germany, average innovation performance is higher in all industries, except for low-technology manufacturing, and in the Netherlands the innovation performance distributions are more dispersed. In both countries, we observe non-linearities in the productivity effects of investing in product innovation in the majority of industries. Frontier firms enjoy the highest returns to product innovation whereas for process innovation the most negative returns are observed in the best-performing enterprises of most industries. We find that in both countries the returns to human capital increase with proximity to the technological frontier in industries with a low level of technological intensity. Strikingly, a negative complementarity e¤ect between human capital and proximity to the technological frontier is observed in knowledge-intensive services, which is most pronounced for the Netherlands. Suggestive evidence suggests an interpretation of a winner-takes-all market in knowledge-intensive services.
    Keywords: Human capital,innovation,productivity,quantile regression
    JEL: C10 I20 O14 O30
    Date: 2014
  5. By: Di Comite, Francesco; Thisse, Jacques-François; Vandenbussche, Hylke
    Abstract: Many trade models of monopolistic competition identify cost efficiency as the main determinant of firm performance in export markets. To date, the analysis of demand factors has received much less attention. We propose a new model where consumer preferences are asymmetric across varieties and heterogeneous across countries. The model generates new predictions and allows for an identification of horizontal differentiation (taste) clearly distinguished from vertical differentiation (quality). Data patterns observed in Belgian firm-product level exports by destination are congruent with the predictions and seem to warrant a richer modelling of consumer demand. JEL Classification: D43, F12, F14, L16
    Keywords: asymmetric preferences, heterogeneous consumers, heterogeneous firms, monopolistic competition, product differentiation
    Date: 2014–05
  6. By: Maximo Camacho; Danilo Leiva-Leon
    Abstract: This paper examines the business cycle linkages that propagate industry-specific business cycle shocks throughout the economy in a way that (sometimes) generates aggregated cycles. The transmission of sectoral business cycles is modelled through a multivariate Markov-switching model, which is estimated by Gibbs sampling. Using nonparametric density estimation approaches, we find that the number and location of modes in the distribution of industrial dissimilarities change over the business cycle. There is a relatively stable trimodal pattern during expansionary and recessionary phases characterized by highly, moderately and lowly synchronized industries. However, during phase changes, the density mass spreads from moderately synchronized industries to lowly synchronized industries. This agrees with a sequential transmission of the industrial business cycle dynamics.
    Keywords: Business fluctuations and cycles, Domestic demand and components, Econometric and statistical methods
    JEL: C22 E27 E32
    Date: 2014
  7. By: Martin C. Byford; Joshua S. Gans
    Abstract: We provide a new model that generates persistent performance differences amongst seemingly similar enterprises. Our model provides a mechanism whereby efficient incumbent rivals can give permission for an inefficient firm to exist in the presence of efficient entrants. We demonstrate that, in a repeated game, an efficient incumbent has a unilateral incentive to establish a relational contract that softens price competition to either strengthen the inefficient firm in a war of attrition that emerges post-entry or reduce the value to the inefficient firm of selling its position to entrants. The paper provides conditions under which that equilibrium exists and derives a number of empirical predictions as implications of the model. It is demonstrated that performance differences are likely to be associated with stability in the identity of firms in the market.
    JEL: L11 L22
    Date: 2014–09
  8. By: Bronwyn H. Hall; Vania Sena
    Abstract: We use an extended version of the well-established Crepon, Duguet and Mairesse model (1998) to model the relationship between appropriability mechanisms, innovation and firm-level productivity. We enrich this model in several ways. First, we consider different types of innovation spending and study the differences in estimates when innovation spending (rather than R&D spending) is used to predict innovation in the CDM model. Second, we assume that a firm simultaneously innovates and chooses among different appropriability methods (formal or informal) to protect the innovation. Finally, in the third stage, we estimate the impact of the innovation output conditional on the choice of appropriability mechanisms on firms' productivity. We find that firms that innovate and rate formal methods for the protection of Intellectual Property (IP) highly are more productive than other firms, but that the same does not hold in the case of informal methods for the protection of a firm's IP, except possibly for large firms as opposed to SMEs. We also find that this result is strongest for firms in the services, trade, and utility sectors, and negative in the manufacturing sector.
    JEL: L25 O30 O34
    Date: 2014–09
  9. By: Neil Lee; Andrés Rodríguez-Pose
    Abstract: Creative cities are seen as important sites for the generation of new ideas, products and processes. Yet, beyond case studies of a few high-profile cities, there is little empirical evidence on the link between local creative industries concentration and innovation. This paper addresses this gap with an analysis of around 1,300 UK SMEs. The results suggest that firms in local economies with high shares of creative industries employment are significantly more likely to introduce entirely new products and processes than firms elsewhere, but not innovations which are simply new to the firm. This effect is not exclusive to creative industries firms and seems to be largely due to firms in medium sized, rather than large, cities. The results imply that creative cities may have functional specialisations in new content creation and so firms are more innovative in them.
    Keywords: Creativity, Creative Cities, Creative Industries, Cities, Innovation
    JEL: O31 O38 R1 R11 R58
    Date: 2014–11
  10. By: Maré, Dave C. (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust); Sanderson, Lynda (New Zealand Treasury); Fabling, Richard (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust)
    Abstract: This paper examines remuneration and labour mobility patterns among workers in foreign-owned firms operating in New Zealand. By tracking workers as they move across jobs, we document the extent of the "foreign wage premium" distinguishing between compositional factors (eg, differences in industry and employment composition across foreign and domestic firms) and remaining differences in wage levels and growth rates. We find that much of the average earnings gap between foreign and domestically-owned firms is due to compositional factors – foreign firms tend to be larger and employ workers who would have received relatively high wages regardless of where they worked. However, even among apparently similar workers and firms, we find a two to four percent earnings gap between workers in domestic and foreign-owned firms. This gap is primarily associated with a wage increase of around two percent on moving from a domestic to a foreign firm, augmented by higher wage growth among foreign-owned firms. These premia appear to be specific to foreign-firm employment, as workers who return to domestically-owned firms do not appear to retain the additional earnings in their subsequent jobs. We then consider whether foreign-owned firms source workers differently from other New Zealand firms and whether there are systematic differences in the destinations of departing employees by firm ownership. Although foreign-owned firms do not appear to preferentially hire recent immigrants, employees of foreign-owned firms are more geographically mobile within New Zealand and are more likely to emigrate within a year of leaving their job.
    Keywords: foreign direct investment (FDI), earnings, labour mobility
    JEL: D22 J31 F23
    Date: 2014–10

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