nep-bec New Economics Papers
on Business Economics
Issue of 2022‒08‒15
seven papers chosen by
Vasileios Bougioukos
London South Bank University

  1. Granular Linkages, Supplier Cost Shocks & Export Performance By Santiago Camara
  2. Job Satisfaction, Structure of Working Environment and Firm Size By TANSEL, AYSIT
  3. Digital adoption and productivity: understanding micro drivers of the aggregate effect By Natália Barbosa; Ana Paula faria
  4. Participation in Global Value Chains and Rent Sharing by Small Firms in Viet Nam By Nobuaki Yamashita; Doan Thi Thanh Ha
  5. How Representative Are Social Partners in Europe? The Role of Dissimilarity By Martínez Matute, Marta; Martins, Pedro S.
  6. Girl Power: Creating More with Less By Sonja Radas; Bruno Skrinjaric
  7. Acquisitions, Management, and Efficiency in Rwanda's Coffee Industry By Rocco Macchiavello; Ameet Morjaria

  1. By: Santiago Camara (Northwestern University)
    Abstract: This paper presents evidence on the granular nature of firms’ network of foreign suppliers and studies its implications for the impact of supplier shocks on domesticfirms’ performance. To demonstrate this, I use customs level information on transactions between Argentinean firms and foreign firms. I highlight two novel stylized facts:(i) the distribution of domestic firms’ number of foreign suppliers is highly skewed with the median firm reporting linkages with only two, (ii) firms focus imported valueon one top-supplier, even when controlling for firm size. Motivated by these facts I construct a theoretical framework of heterogeneous firms subject to search frictions inthe market for foreign suppliers. Through a calibration exercise I study the framework’s predictions and test them in the data using a shift-share identification strategy.Results present evidence of significant frictions in the market for foreign suppliers and strong import-export complementarities.
    Keywords: Export Dynamics, International trade, Search and matching, Heterogeneous firms, Granularity, Firm-to-firm linkages.
    Date: 2022–06
    Abstract: Employees’ wellbeing is important to the firms. Analysis of job satisfaction may give insight into various aspect of labor market behavior, such as worker productivity, absenteeism and job turn over. Little empirical work has been done on the relationship between structure of working environment and job satisfaction. This paper investigates the relationship between working environment, firm size and worker job satisfaction. We use a unique data of 28,240 British employees, Workplace Employee Relations Survey. In this data set the employee questionnaire is matched with the employer questionnaire. Four measures of job satisfaction considered are satisfaction with influence over job, satisfaction with amount of pay, satisfaction with sense of achievement and satisfaction with respect from supervisors. They are all negatively related to the firm size implying lower levels of job satisfaction in larger firms. The firm size in return is negatively related to the degree of flexibility in the working environment. The small firms have more flexible work environments. This is the first study that explore the effect of work amenities. We further find that, contrary to the previous results lower levels of job satisfaction in larger firms can not necessarily be attributed to the inflexibility in their structure of working environment.
    Keywords: Job Satisfactions, Firm Size, Working Environment, Linked Employer-Employee data, Britain.
    JEL: J21 J28 J29 J81
    Date: 2022–06–25
  3. By: Natália Barbosa (Universidade do Minho); Ana Paula faria (Universidade do Minho)
    Abstract: Digital technologies have the scope to engender positive effects on productivity at firm and aggregate level. However, empirical evidence and theoretical contributions are ambiguous as mixed findings and diverse explanations have been put forward. We use a rich and representative sample of Portuguese firms over the period 2014-2019 to empirically assess the relationship between digital technologies adoption and productivity. Based on estimations over the entire distribution of firm’s productivity, we find that heterogeneous digital technologies affect differently the dynamics of productivity and the convergence to the frontier. This leads to mixed findings with scope to diverse impact in the aggregate productivity. Moreover, positive and significant effects on productivity require an upgrading on the degree of sophistication and complementarity among digital technologies and benefit from the ability of firms to interact and learn with digitalised peers in the same industry.
    Keywords: Digital technologies, Productivity, Spillover effects
    JEL: L20 H81 L25
    Date: 2022–06
  4. By: Nobuaki Yamashita (Swinburne University of Technology, Keio University, ANU); Doan Thi Thanh Ha (Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA))
    Abstract: It is well documented that firms that participate in global value chains (GVCs) are larger and more productive, maintaining higher profitability compared to those without such connections. This paper asks the novel question of whether higher profits being connected to GVCs are shared with employees in the form of better pay. We investigated this rent sharing, using a matched employer–employee dataset of Vietnamese small firms surveyed between 2013 and 2015. We found that positive profits would feed into individual wages after accounting for the firm and employee attributes, as well as firm and employee fixed effects, but this is only found for those small firms without any involvement with GVCs. Rent sharing, on the other hand, is completely absent in GVC firms. We take this as evidence that GVC firms provide both higher wages and insurance against demand fluctuations.
    Keywords: Global value chains (GVCs), rent sharing, profits, outsourcing, multinational enterprises, Viet Nam, microenterprises, small and medium enterprises (SMEs)
    Date: 2022–01–27
  5. By: Martínez Matute, Marta (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid); Martins, Pedro S. (Nova School of Business and Economics)
    Abstract: Social partners (trade unions and employers' associations) and their representativeness can shape labour institutions and economic and social outcomes in many countries. In this paper, we argue that, when examining social partners' representativeness, it is important to consider both affiliation rates and dissimilarity measures. The latter concerns the extent to which affiliated and non-affiliated firms or workers are distributed similarly across relevant dimensions, including firm size. In our analysis of the European Company Survey, we find that affiliation density and dissimilarity measures correlate positively across countries, particularly in the case of employers' associations in which we focus. This result also holds across employers' associations when we use more detailed, firm population data for Portugal. We conclude that higher affiliation densities do not necessarily correspond to more representative social partners as they can involve greater dissimilarity between affiliated and non-affiliated firms.
    Keywords: employers' associations, social dialogue, collective bargaining
    JEL: J50 J23 L22
    Date: 2022–06
  6. By: Sonja Radas (The Institute of Economics, Zagreb); Bruno Skrinjaric (The Institute of Economics, Zagreb)
    Abstract: Studies show that women are very productive employees, but that as business owners, compared to their male counterparts, they run companies that earn less, grow at a lesser rate, and employ a smaller number of employees. One of the explanations for this discrepancy argues that indicators such as sales, turnover or profit do not measure performance adequately because they are dependent on the size of the firm. Since women often make a conscious decision to keep their companies small, these performance measures may not adequately represent women-owned businesses. We study a panel of micro firms across all industries, from three EU countries of comparable size (Croatia, Slovenia, and Slovakia) in the period 2010 – 2019. Results indicate that female-owned firms have higher values of both turnover per asset and value added per asset. Additionally, results suggest that during recession years, female-led firms show a degree of resilience to these adverse effects, and they manage to increase their turnover per asset by 3 to 4 percent on average, compared to male-led firms. We conclude that although women-owned micro firms tend to have less resources compared to men’s, women can create larger output per asset, suggesting capability to combine those resources in a very effective way.
    Keywords: women entrepreneurship; firm performance; effectuation effect; recession
    JEL: B54 J16 L26
    Date: 2022–04
  7. By: Rocco Macchiavello; Ameet Morjaria
    Abstract: Well-functioning markets allocate assets to owners that improve firms’ management and performance. We study the effects of ownership changes on coffee mills in Rwanda – an industry in which managing relationships with farmers and seasonal workers is important and that has seen many ownership changes in recent years. We combine administrative data, a survey panel of mills and an original survey of acquirers that allows us to construct acquirer-specific and target-specific control groups. A difference-in-differences design reveals that ownership changes do not improve performance unless the mill is acquired by a foreign firm. Our preferred interpretation – supported by detailed survey evidence that considers alternative hypotheses – is that foreign firms successfully implement management changes in key operational areas. Upon acquisition, both domestic and foreign owned mills attempt to implement similar changes, but domestic firms face resistance from workers and farmers. Domestic owners have relationships with their local communities, which can create opportunities to establish new mills and acquire existing ones. However, these same relationships create pressure to maintain status-quo relational arrangements, which makes it harder to implement managerial changes.
    JEL: D24 G32 G34 L25 N57 O12 O16
    Date: 2022–07

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