nep-eff New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2006‒11‒12
four papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
Universita degli Studi di Verona

  1. Microeconomic determinants of acquisitions of Eastern European banks by Western European banks By G. LANINE; R. VANDER VENNET
  2. How Do Mobile Information Technology Networks Affect Firm Strategy and Performance? Firm-Level Evidence from Taxicab Fleets By Evan Rawley
  3. Health production and the socioeconomic determinants of health in OECD countries: the use of efficiency models By Jean Spinks; Bruce Hollingsworth
  4. Rationalising Inefficiency: A Study of Canadian Bank Branches By Mette Asmild; Peter Bogetoft; Jens Leth Hougaard

    Abstract: A considerable number of Western European banks have acquired banks in Central and Eastern Europe from the mid-1990s onwards. The question is whether or not this will improve the efficiency and profitability of the Central and Eastern European banking sectors. We test the relative strength of the efficiency versus the market power hypotheses by investigating the bank-specific characteristics of the banks involved in the cross-border acquisitions. We also examine the determinants of the post-acquisition target banks’ performance. Our results indicate that large Western European banks have targeted relatively large and efficient CEEC banks with an established presence in their local retail banking markets. We find no evidence that cross-border bank acquisitions in the CEEC are driven by efficiency motivations. The evidence supports the market power hypothesis, raising concerns about the optimal balance between foreign ownership and competition.
    Keywords: Mergers and acquisitions, cross-border acquisitions, bank efficiency, transition economies, Central and Eastern Europe
    JEL: C30 E44 F21 G21
    Date: 2006–09
  2. By: Evan Rawley (University of California, Berkeley)
    Abstract: This paper examines how the adoption of mobile information technology networks impact firm strategy and performance in the U.S. taxicab industry. Using a rich, novel firm-level data set from the Economic Census, I test transaction cost economics’ prediction that adoption of mobile IT networks leads to shifts in the boundary of the firm toward increased fleet ownership of vehicles. I then exploit the homogeneity of the industry’s production function and exogenous variation in local market conditions to precisely measure the impact of adoption of mobile IT networks on productivity. I find strong evidence that firms respond to adoption of mobile IT networks by changing their organizational structure, shifting toward owning a greater fraction of vehicles in their fleets (as opposed to contracting with independent driver-owners for vehicles). I then use a precise and economically meaningful measure of firm performance to show that adoption of mobile IT networks causes firms to become more productive. The results suggest that adoption of mobile IT networks increases asset utilization by improving within-firm coordination but that firms must simultaneously shift toward a more highly vertically integrated structure to fully capture the benefits of mobile IT networks.
    Date: 2006–10
  3. By: Jean Spinks (Victorian Public Health Training scheme); Bruce Hollingsworth (Centre for Health Economics, Monash University)
    Date: 2005–01
  4. By: Mette Asmild (Nottingham University Business School); Peter Bogetoft (Department of Economics, Royal Agricultural University); Jens Leth Hougaard (Institute of Economics, University of Copenhagen)
    Abstract: Many studies have attempted to explain estimated inefficiency, for instance by bounded rationality, ignorance, lack of incentives or motivation etc. However, the presence of inefficiency remains in conflict with the neo-classical idea of economic rationality. This paper suggests ways in which the outcomes of Data Envelopment Analysis-type efficiency models can be rationalised. To illustrate the concepts we consider a data set of Canadian bank branches. The empirical results are encouraging since what appears to be inefficiency in some branches can be argued to be the outcome of rational decisions regarding resource allocation.
    Keywords: Banking, Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA), Rationalising Inefficiency, Resource utilization, Allocation
    Date: 2006–01–11

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