New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2012‒04‒23
eight papers chosen by

  1. Bank Efficiency and Client Firms' Export Behavior: Evidence from firm-bank match-level data By INUI Tomohiko; MIYAKAWA Daisuke; SHOJI Keishi
  2. Productivity and the Welfare of Nations By Basu, Susanto; Pascali, Luigi; Schiantarelli, Fabio; Serven, Luis
  3. A conditional directional distance function approach for measuring regional environmental efficiency: Evidence from the UK regions By Halkos, George; Tzeremes, Nickolaos
  4. Foreign acquisition and the performance of New Zealand firms By Richard Fabling; Lynda Sanderson
  5. Estimating allocative efficiency in port authorities with demand uncertainty By Hidalgo, Soraya; Núñez-Sánchez , Ramón
  6. Information and Communication Technologies and Productivity Growth: A Survey of the Literature By Tobias Kretschmer
  7. Financial liberalization, growth, productivity and capital accumulation: The case of European integration By Agnieszka Gehringer
  8. Benchmarking Regions: Estimating the Counterfactual Distribution of Labor Market Outcomes By Fitzenberger, Bernd; Furdas, Marina

  1. By: INUI Tomohiko; MIYAKAWA Daisuke; SHOJI Keishi
    Abstract: This paper empirically studies the impact of banks' efficiency on their client firms' export behavior. Our empirical analysis shows that the marginal impact of the total factor productivity (TFP) of cash-flow constrained firms to the extensive margin of exports increases as the efficiency of top lender banks improves. This channel is important for initiating exports but is neither for sustaining the export status nor the intensive margin. It implies that the main role of banks is to help prominent firms cover the fixed cost associated with the start-up of exports. These results also imply that it is necessary to relate various firm dynamics to the detailed characteristics of the banks having relationships with the firms.
    Date: 2012–04
  2. By: Basu, Susanto (Boston College); Pascali, Luigi (Pompeu Fabra University); Schiantarelli, Fabio (Boston College); Serven, Luis (World Bank)
    Abstract: We show that the welfare of a country's infinitely-lived representative consumer is summarized, to a first order, by total factor productivity and by the capital stock per capita. These variables suffice to calculate welfare changes within a country, as well as welfare differences across countries. The result holds regardless of the type of production technology and the degree of market competition. It applies to open economies as well, if total factor productivity is constructed using domestic absorption, instead of gross domestic product, as the measure of output. It also requires that total factor productivity be constructed with prices and quantities as perceived by consumers, not firms. Thus, factor shares need to be calculated using after-tax wages and rental rates and they will typically sum to less than one. These results are used to calculate welfare gaps and growth rates in a sample of developed countries with high-quality total factor productivity and capital data. Under realistic scenarios, the U.K. and Spain had the highest growth rates of welfare during the sample period 1985-2005, but the U.S. had the highest level of welfare.
    Keywords: TFP, welfare, productivity, Solow residual
    JEL: D24 D90 E20 O47
    Date: 2012–04
  3. By: Halkos, George; Tzeremes, Nickolaos
    Abstract: This paper, by using conditional directional distance functions as introduced by Simar and Vanhems [J. Econometrics 166 (2012) 342-354] modifies the model by Färe and Grosskopf [Eur. J. Operat. Res. 157 (2004) 242-245], examines the link between regional environmental efficiency and economic growth. The proposed model using conditional directional distance functions incorporates the effect of regional economic growth on regions’ environmental efficiency levels. The results from the UK regional data reveal that economic growth has a negative effect on regions’ environmental performance up to a certain GDP per capita level, where after that point the effect becomes positive. This indicates the existence of a Kuznets type relationship between the UK regions’ environmental performance and economic growth.
    Keywords: Regional environmental performance; Directional distance function; Conditional measures; U.K. regions
    JEL: R10 Q50 C14 Q56 C60
    Date: 2012–04
  4. By: Richard Fabling; Lynda Sanderson (Reserve Bank of New Zealand)
    Abstract: This paper examines the firm-level determinants of foreign acquisitions of New Zealand companies, and the consequences for both the purchased firms and the workers within those firms. We follow a combined propensity score matching and difference-in-differences approach to identify and address endogenous selection of acquisition targets. The results suggest that foreign firms tend to target high-performing New Zealand companies. Acquired firms then exhibit higher growth in average wages and output, relative to similar domestic firms, but do not appear in general to increase their productivity or capital intensity. We find no evidence of differential survival rates for recently acquired foreign firms.
    JEL: D22 F23
    Date: 2011–12
  5. By: Hidalgo, Soraya; Núñez-Sánchez , Ramón
    Abstract: This paper aims to analyse the impact of port demand variability on the allocative efficiency of Spanish port authorities during the period 1986-2007. From a distance function model we can obtain a measure of allocative efficiency using two different approaches: error components approach and parametric approach. We model the variability of port demand from the cyclical component of traffic series by applying the Hodrick-Prescott filter. The results show that the inclusion of variability does not affect the efficiency measures, except in the case of containerised general cargo. Moreover, we demonstrate that port authorities have excess capacity and their resources are misallocated. Finally we establish that the allocative inefficiency of Spanish port authorities is difficult to resolve given the limited substitution possibilities among the different pairs of inputs.
    Keywords: allocative efficiency; distance function; demand variability; Hodrick-Prescott filter; ports
    JEL: L32 R53 L51 L92 R48 D24
    Date: 2012–04–03
  6. By: Tobias Kretschmer
    Abstract: This paper presents a review of existing studies on dynamic, macroeconomic effects of the ICT on productivity and growth.
    Date: 2012–04–13
  7. By: Agnieszka Gehringer
    Abstract: In the present contribution, we concentrate on the process of financial liberalization in a specific context of European economic and monetary integration. We implement de facto and de jure measures of financial liberalization and find that formal aspects of financial openness generate a strongly positive impact on economic growth and its sources, productivity growth and capital accumulation. Moreover, there is evidence of a positive contribution to the process stemming from the EU membership, while no substantial effect comes from the euro adoption. Finally, we investigate the effects from financial integration on country groups within the EU.
    Keywords: Financial integration, economic growth, productivity, European integration
    JEL: F41 F36 F43
    Date: 2012–03–16
  8. By: Fitzenberger, Bernd (University of Freiburg); Furdas, Marina (University of Freiburg)
    Abstract: This paper develops and implements a new benchmarking approach for labor market regions. Based on panel data for regions, we use nonparametric matching techniques to account for observed labor market characteristics and for spatial proximity. As the benchmark, we estimate the counterfactual distribution of labor market outcomes for a region based on outcomes of similar regions. This allows to measure both the rank (relative performance) and the absolute performance based on the actual outcome for a region. Our outcome variable of interest is the hiring rate among the unemployed. We implement different similarity measures to account for differences in labor market conditions and spatial proximity, and we choose the tuning parameters in our matching approach based on a cross-validation procedure. The results show that both observed labor market characteristics and spatial proximity are important features to successfully match regions. Specifically, the modified Zhao (2004) distance measure and geographic distance in logs work best in our applications. Our estimated performance measures remain quite stable over time.
    Keywords: matching function, regional employment offices, performance measurement, nonparametric matching, conditional quantile positions
    JEL: C14 J68 R50
    Date: 2012–04

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