New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2013‒11‒16
twenty-six papers chosen by

  1. Efficiency of wheat and cotton producing farms in Uzbekistan: a Stochastic Frontier Approach By Absalyamov, Davron
  2. Productivity Growth of ECOWAS Common Crops: A Tale of Two Competing Frontier Methods of Analysis By Olusegun, Ajetomobi Joshua
  3. Measuring the Technical Efficiency of Farms Producing Environmental Output: Parametric and Semiparametric Estimation of Multi-output Stochastic Ray Production Frontiers By Tomasz Gerard Czekaj
  4. Corporate Taxation and Productivity Catch-Up: Evidence from European Firms By Norman Gemmel; Richard Kneller; Danny McGowan; Ismael Sanz
  5. How labour market regulation shapes bank performance in EU-15 countries? By Anastasia Koutsomanoli-Filippaki; Emmanuel Mamatzakis
  6. Panel Data Nonparametric Estimation of Production Risk and Risk Preferences: An Application to Polish Dairy Farms By Tomasz Gerard Czekaj; Arne Henningsen
  7. Directional Distances and their Robust versions. Computational and Testing Issues By Cinzia Daraio; LŽopold Simar
  8. Evaluating the performance of UEFA Champions League scorers By Papahristodoulou, Christos
  9. The Agricultural Productivity Gap By Douglas Gollin; David Lagakos; Michael E. Waugh
  10. An Empirical Analysis of the Relationship Between Individual Characteristics and Research Productivity: Relationship Between Experience as Practical Physician and Productivity By Naomi Fukuzawa
  11. Does the Unemployement Benefit Institution Affect the Productivity of Workers? Evidence from a Field Experiment By Blanco, M.; Dalton, P.S.; Vargas, J.F.
  12. Fuel Taxes versus Efficiency Standards – An Instrumental Variable Approach By Manuel Frondel; Colin Vance
  13. Do Nations Combine O-Rings with Cobb-Douglas? Evidence from agriculture, equipment production, and the informal sector By Oasis, Kodila-Tedika
  14. A comparison of public and private schools in Spain using robust nonparametric frontier methods By Cordero, José Manuel; Prior, Diego; Simancas Rodríguez, Rosa
  15. Overcoming Critical Constraints to Sustaining Productivity Growth in Key Commodities of Asia and the Pacific By Sombilla, Mercedita; Mapa, Dennis; Piza, Sharon
  16. The performance impact of firm ownership transformation in China By Beirne, John; Liu, Guy S.; Sun, Pei
  17. Bridging the Energy Efficiency Gap: Policy Insights from Economic Theory and Empirical Evidence By Gillingham, Kenneth; Palmer, Karen
  18. Do middle managers matter? By Elena Feltrinelli; Roberto Gabriele; Sandro Trento
  19. Industry-Level Competitiveness, Productivity, and Effective Exchange Rates in East Asia By ITO Keiko; SHIMIZU Junko
  20. Effects of Large-Scale Research Funding Programs:A Japanese Case Study By Takanori Ida; Naomi Fukuzawa
  21. Valuing wind farms’ environmental impacts by geographical distance: A contingent valuation study in Portugal By Anabela Botelho; Lígia M.Costa Pinto; Patricia Sousa
  22. Market facilitation by local government and firm efficiency : evidence from China By Cull, Robert; Xu, Lixin Colin; Yang, Xi; Zhou, Li-An; Zhu, Tian
  24. Conditional stochastic dominance tests in dynamic settings By Gonzalo, Jesus; Olmo, Jose
  25. Value Added and Contextual Factors in Education: Evidence from Chilean Chools By Thieme Claudio; Prior Diego; Tortosa-Ausina Emili; Gempp René
  26. Incentives and teacher effort: further evidence from a developing country By Dang, Hai-Anh H.; King, Elizabeth M.

  1. By: Absalyamov, Davron
    Abstract: In the recent decades agricultural production in Uzbekistan has been facing problems in relation to environment and agricultural management systems especially with regard to the efficiency and the productivity of agricultural enterprises. The sharp decrease of total factor productivity after independency in 1990 can be traced back to inefficiency and misallocation of resources. Although statistical data shows steadily increasing partial productivity of land and labor since 1996 land degradation, low level of mechanization, partial water scarcity and the use of low-productive labor appear to prove the opposite. The specific feature of the current study is to estimate impact of environmental factors such as water availability and provision, soil quality on technical efficiency level of farms. Therefore the main question of the study is how efficient are wheat and cotton producing farms in Uzbekistan and what are the main sources of inefficiency? Other specific questions of the study are: • How do ecological factors such water scarcity, soil salinity and other farm-specific, farm-size specific and region-specific factors affect farm efficiency? • What is the pattern of input use and production output for wheat and cotton producing farmers? • How is the production of state-ordered commodities organized?
    Keywords: Efficiency of wheat and cotton producing farms in Uzbekistan, Stochastic frontier approach, Community/Rural/Urban Development, International Development, Productivity Analysis, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods, R, Q, O,
    Date: 2013–10–01
  2. By: Olusegun, Ajetomobi Joshua
    Abstract: This study examines productivity growth of 3 ECOWAS crops, namely, rice, cotton and millet, using both Stochastic Frontier Analysis (SFA) and Data Envelopment analysis (DEA). The data cover a 45 year period (1961-2005). Calculations are based on data collected from FAOSTAT database, International Rice research Institute (IRRI) world rice statistics, and international cotton advisory committee database. The results for both SFA and DEA show that (1) there are inefficiencies but productivity progress among ECOWAS member nations producing rice, cotton and millet. (2) Though, magnitudes of the inefficiencies and productivity progress vary across models applied and by segmentation of the data set, there is little or no conflict in the overall results. (3) Technical change has had the greatest impact on productivity, indicating that producers have a tendency to catch-up with the front runners.
    Keywords: Stochastic Frontier Analysis, Data Envelopment Analysis, Crops, ECOWAS, Crop Production/Industries, Productivity Analysis, C13, C24, O33, O47,
    Date: 2012–11
  3. By: Tomasz Gerard Czekaj (Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the technical efficiency of Polish dairy farms producing environmental output using the stochastic ray function to model multi-output – multi-input technology. Two general models are considered. One which neglects the provision of environmental output and one which accounts for such output. Three different proxies of environmental output are discussed: the ratio of permanent grassland (including rough grazing) to total agricultural area, the total area of permanent grassland and the amount of environmental subsidies which farmers are paid for providing environmental goods and services. These proxies are discussed on the basis of microeconomic production theory and are empirically compared by the econometric approach using parametric and semiparametric stochastic frontier models. The main focus is on the estimation of technical efficiency of farms producing the environmental output. Since some farms do not provide such output at all, the stochastic ray frontier functions are estimated to overcome the problem of the zero valued dependent variables which often occur when the Translog output distance function is used. The detailed results of the technical efficiency analysis show that, although the estimated efficiencies from the models which neglect the environmental output and those which account for the output are rather similar on average, the rankings based on these efficiencies differ. Finally, based on the theoretical economic reasoning and empirical application, we find that, for the given dataset, the semiparametric stochastic frontier model which uses a quantity of permanent grassland area as a proxy of environmental output, is the most suitable for application.
    Keywords: environmental output, stochastic frontier analysis, stochastic ray function, Translog, Polish dairy farms
    JEL: C14 C23 D24 Q12
    Date: 2013–10
  4. By: Norman Gemmel (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand); Richard Kneller (University of Nottingham, UK); Danny McGowan (Bangor University, UK); Ismael Sanz (Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Spain)
    Abstract: Firms that lay far behind the technological frontier have the most to gain from imitating the technology or management practices of others. That some firms converge relatively slowly to the productivity frontier suggests the existence of factors that cause them to under-invest in their productivity. In this paper we explore whether higher rates of corporate taxation affect firm productivity convergence because they reduce the after tax returns to productivity enhancing investments for small firms. Using data for 11 European countries we find evidence for such an effect; productivity growth in small firms is slower the higher are high corporate tax rates. Our results are robust to the use of instrumental variable and panel data techniques with quantitatively similar effects found from a natural experiment following the German tax reforms in 2001.
    Keywords: Productivity, taxation, convergence
    JEL: D24 H25 L11 O31
    Date: 2013–03
  5. By: Anastasia Koutsomanoli-Filippaki (Bank of Greece); Emmanuel Mamatzakis (University of Sussex)
    Abstract: The European banking industry is undergoing significant structural changes and cost-cutting programs, also as a result of the financial crisis. Yet, the institutional features that affect banks’ ability to adjust costs and in particular personnel expenses, which comprise a significant part of banks’ non-interest cost structure, have not been adequately studied. This paper investigates the effect of labour market institutions and regulations on bank performance in EU-15 countries. Results indicate the existence of a negative relationship between bank performance and the liberalization of EU labour markets. However, when looking at the disaggregated components of the labour index, we find evidence that different forces are at play and that the liberalization of the minimum wage, hiring and firing regulations and the cost of dismissals could assert a positive effect on efficiency.
    Keywords: Labour regulation; technical; allocative efficiency; DEA; banks
    JEL: D22 D24 G21 L25 J30
    Date: 2013–09
  6. By: Tomasz Gerard Czekaj (Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen); Arne Henningsen (Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen)
    Abstract: We apply nonparametric panel data kernel regression to investigate production risk, out-put price uncertainty, and risk attitudes of Polish dairy farms based on a firm-level unbalanced panel data set that covers the period 2004–2010. We compare different model specifications and different approaches for obtaining firm-specific measures of risk attitudes. We found that Polish dairy farmers are risk averse regarding production risk and price uncertainty. According to our results, Polish dairy farmers perceive the production risk as being more significant than the risk related to output price uncertainty.
    Keywords: production risk, price uncertainty, nonparametric econometrics, panel data, Polish dairy farms
    JEL: C14 C23 D24 Q12
    Date: 2013–10
  7. By: Cinzia Daraio (Department of Computer, Control and Management Engineering, Universita' degli Studi di Roma "La Sapienza"); LŽopold Simar (Institute of Statistics, Biostatistics et Actuarial Sciences, Universite'Catholique de Louvain, Belgium)
    Abstract: Directional distance functions provide very flexible tools for investigating the performance of Decision Making Units (DMUs). Their flexibility relies on their ability to handle undesirable outputs and to account for non-discretionary inputs and/or outputs by fixing zero values in some elements of the directional vector. Simar and Vanhems (2012) and Simar et al. (2012) indicate how the statistical properties of Farrell-Debreu type of radial efficiency measures can be transferred to directional distances. Moreover, robust versions of these distances are also available, for conditional and unconditional measures. Bùadin et al. (2012) have shown how conditional radial distances are useful to investigate the effect of environmental factors on the production process. In this paper we develop the operational aspects for computing conditional and unconditional directional distances and their robust versions, in particular when some of the elements of the directional vector are fixed at zero. After that, we show how the approach of Bùadin et al. (2012) can be adapted in a directional distance framework, including bandwidth selection and two-stage regression of conditional efficiency scores. Finally, we suggest a procedure, based on bootstrap techniques, for testing the significance of environmental factors on directional efficiency scores. The procedure is illustrated through simulated and real data.
    Keywords: Directional Distances, Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA), Free Disposal Hull (FDH), Conditional efficiency measures, Nonparametric frontiers, Bootstrap
    Date: 2013–11
  8. By: Papahristodoulou, Christos
    Abstract: The ranking of football players has always engaged media and supporters worldwide. The different views on ranking are due to two reasons. First, leagues are heterogeneous with various qualities. Second, fans often rely on different performance measures and statistics. Despite the fact that team and player bias will never disappear, this paper aims to objectively evaluate the efficiency of 42 top scorers who have played in the UEFA Champions League (UCL) over a period of six years, based on official match-play “multi-input and output” statistics, using input- and output oriented DEA models.
    Keywords: efficiency, scorers, forwards, midfielders, Champions League, DEA
    JEL: C44 C7 L83 Z19
    Date: 2013–05–28
  9. By: Douglas Gollin; David Lagakos; Michael E. Waugh
    Abstract: According to national accounts data, value added per worker is much higher in the non-agricultural sector than in agriculture in the typical country, and particularly so in developing countries. Taken at face value, this “agricultural productivity gap” suggests that labor is greatly misallocated across sectors. In this paper, we draw on new micro evidence to ask to what extent the gap is still present when better measures of sector labor inputs and value added are taken into consideration. We find that even after considering sector differences in hours worked and human capital per worker, as well as alternative measures of sector output constructed from household survey data, a puzzlingly large gap remains.
    JEL: E01 E24 J61 O11 O13 O15 O18 O41 R11
    Date: 2013–11
  10. By: Naomi Fukuzawa
    Abstract: This paper provides an analysis of the relationship between research performance and individual characteristics (e.g., career path information) of researchers, based on information provided in the Curriculum Vitaes (CVs) of 565 excellent researchers within the life sciences and medical sciences fields in Japan. I specifically analyzed the relationship between the experiences of practical physicians and research performance. As a result, I found that the experience as a practical physician had a statistically positive relationship with the number of research papers, but there was not a significant relationship with the number of citations. Moreover, the diversity of a researcher’s career related significantly to the number of citations and patents. An employment experience at a young age with a company or independent administrative agency had a significant and positive relationship with number of coauthors. However, a significant relationship between work experience in a foreign country and research performance was not observed.
    Keywords: Research productivity, Curriculum Vitae, Career path, Practical physician, Diversity of career, Research grant
  11. By: Blanco, M.; Dalton, P.S.; Vargas, J.F. (Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research)
    Abstract: Abstract: We investigate whether and how the type of unemployment bene t institution affects productivity. We designed a field experiment to compare workers' productivity under a welfare system, where the unemployed receive an unconditional monetary transfer, with their productivity under a workfare system, where the transfer is received conditional on the unemployed spending some time on ancillary activities. First, we fi nd that having an unemployment bene fit institution, regardless of whether it makes transfers conditional or unconditional, increases workers' productivity. Second, we find that productivity is higher under Welfare than under Workfare. Becoming unemployed under Welfare comes at the psychological cost of a drop in self-esteem, presumably due to the shame or stigma associated with receiving an unconditional unemployment benefi t. We document the empirical relevance of precisely this channel. The differences we observe in productivity suggest that this psychological cost acts as an extra non- monetary incentive for workers under Welfare to put a higher effort in their work.
    Keywords: Unemployment Benefi ts;Workfare;Productivity;Self-esteem;Shame
    JEL: J24 J65 J45
    Date: 2013
  12. By: Manuel Frondel; Colin Vance
    Abstract: Using household travel diary data collected in Germany between 1997 and 2012, we employ an instrumental variable (IV) approach to estimate fuel price and efficiency elasticities. The aim is to gauge the relative impacts of fuel economy standards and fuel taxes on distance traveled. We find that the magnitudes of the elasticity estimates are statistically indistinguishable: higher fuel prices reduce driving by the same degree as higher fuel efficiency increases driving. This finding indicates an offsetting effect of fuel efficiency standards on the effectiveness of fuel taxation, calling into question the efficacy of the European Commission’s current efforts to legislate CO2 emissions limits for new cars given prevailing high fuel taxes.
    Keywords: Automobile travel; panel estimation models; rebound effect
    JEL: D13 Q41
    Date: 2013–10
  13. By: Oasis, Kodila-Tedika
    Abstract: The article focuses on the conditional relationship between various human capital proxies and the size of potential “O-Ring” or “Cobb-Douglas” sectors. We find that that years of schooling are a robust negative predictor of the size of the informal sector, conditioned on national average test scores, suggests that the signaling and acculturation mechanisms of schooling may help shift potentially productive workers into the formal economy.
    Keywords: Intelligence, Human capital; Strategic complementarities, productivity
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2013–11–09
  14. By: Cordero, José Manuel; Prior, Diego; Simancas Rodríguez, Rosa
    Abstract: This paper uses an innovative approach to evaluate educational performance of Spanish students in PISA 2009. Our purpose is to decompose their overall inefficiency between different components with a special focus on studying the differences between public and state subsidized private schools. We use a technique inspired by the non-parametric Free Disposal Hull (FDH) and the application of robust order-m models, which allow us to mitigate the influence of outliers and the curse of dimensionality. Subsequently, we adopt a metafrontier framework to assess each student relative to the own group best practice frontier (students in the same school) and to different frontiers constructed from the best practices of different types of schools. The results show that state-subsidised private schools outperform public schools, although the differences between them are significantly reduced once we control for the type of students enrolled in both type of centres.
    Keywords: Education, Efficiency, Multilevel Modelling, Free Disposal Hull
    JEL: C14 H41 I21
    Date: 2013–11
  15. By: Sombilla, Mercedita (National Economic and Development Authority); Mapa, Dennis (University of the Philippines); Piza, Sharon (Asian Development Bank)
    Abstract: Two trends on yields have been observed for rice, wheat, and even edible oils in Asia. The deceleration of yield growth is one of these trends. The other relates to the differential yield increases across countries in the region. This study provides explanations for both trends and relates these to the exhaustion of the yield potential of current technology, emerging threats posed by climate change and other disturbances, varying levels of development across countries and hence the development of infrastructure, among others. Total factor productivity (TFP) estimates for these commodities indicate the potential to overcome these constraints, however. Key determinants of TFP growth were identified and discussed. While the influence of these determinants on the TFP estimates was not tested empirically in this study because of data limitations, evidence of the relationship was clear and strong in numerous TFP studies done for the agriculture sector as a whole, and for rice and wheat in various countries including Asian countries. Long-term growth will have to come from great advances in interventions being undertaken, three of which include (i) major breakthroughs in new varieties and farming systems in both fertile and unfertile lands; (ii) the restructuring of small farms into more efficient, mechanized large-scale operations, especially in production areas with good infrastructure for market access and irrigation; and (iii) the development of market mechanisms to enhance the comparative advantage of domestic production and explore the value-adding potential of commodities, particularly edible oil. Three policy recommendations are also forwarded to achieve these great advances: (i) sustained investment in agriculture; (ii) getting the mix of institutions right; and (iii) gearing up for globalization. The role of development partners as well as the private sector in effecting sustainable growth is briefly discussed as a concluding section.
    Keywords: TFP; constraints; Asia Pacific; rice; wheat; edible oil; investment; institutions; globalization; private sector; development partners
    JEL: D24 D57 O13 Q11 Q18
    Date: 2013–09–09
  16. By: Beirne, John; Liu, Guy S.; Sun, Pei
    Abstract: Does firm ownership change affect performance? On the basis of a mean-value analysis and a fixed effects panel analysis of over 1100 Chinese companies during the period of ownership reform (1997-2003), this paper examines the performance impact of firm ownership transformation in China. The data used allows us to compare the performance impacts of different methods taken to restructure the ownership of state firms, such as full versus partial privatisation. For China, a state-capitalist nation and the world’s largest state sector under transition, the mix of state and private ownership – partial privatisation – emerges as the best performing type of ownership model for firms. Here, the firm can gain the best synergy of both state support and private business strength. The experience of the Chinese reform shows that the political context and system are important influencing factors on ownership preference for a firm. JEL Classification: L33, O40, P27
    Keywords: Chinese enterprise reform, corporate governance, firm ownership, Firm performance, privatisation
    Date: 2013–10
  17. By: Gillingham, Kenneth; Palmer, Karen (Resources for the Future)
    Abstract: Despite several decades of government policies to promote energy efficiency, estimates of the costs and benefits of such policies remain controversial. At the heart of the controversy is whether there is an "energy efficiency gap," whereby consumers and firms fail to make seemingly positive net present value energy saving investments. High implicit discount rates, undervaluation of future fuel savings, and negative cost energy efficiency measures have all been discussed as evidence of the existence of a gap. We review explanations for an energy efficiency gap, including reasons why the size of the gap may be overstated, neoclassical explanations for a gap, and recent evidence from behavioral economics that has potential to help us understand why a gap could exist. Our review raises fundamental questions about traditional welfare analysis, yet we find the alternatives offered in the literature to be far from ready for use in policy analysis. Nevertheless, we offer several suggestions for policymakers and for future economic research.
    Keywords: energy efficiency, market failures, behavioral failures, behavioral economics
    JEL: Q38 Q41
    Date: 2013–10–17
  18. By: Elena Feltrinelli; Roberto Gabriele; Sandro Trento
    Abstract: Middle Managers (MM) are key figures for firm ability to gain and sustaining competitive advantage (CIT). Their training activity can be seen as an important tool for improving and upgrading managerial practices to sustain firm strategy that is strictly related with its competitive advantage. The present research aims at deepening the analysis undertaken within the literature branch concerned with the effects of training of middle managers on direct measures of firm performance as measured by profitability indices and productivity. In particular, the study focuses on middle management continuing vocational training in the Italian manufacturing sector in the time window 2006-2011. The study is based on a novel database containing balance sheet data together with exhaustive information about the training undertaken by managers working in the sample of companies available Ð provided by Fondirigenti. The study extends and deepens the existing literature based on two key aspects: (a) the possibility to disaggregate the training activity along two dimensions: the methodology used and the field in which the training is done; (b) the opportunity to use different more precise measures of training, namely the cost in euros and the time devoted to the activity. We empirically test, using regression models based on GMM estimation, a set of research hypotheses and we find support for the five following hypotheses: (H1) Middle management continuing vocational training has an effect on performance indicators namely ROI, ROE and TFP, Moreover the first two show a TMGT effect; MM training is more effective for: larger firms, older firms (H2 and H3); external resources are important in making MM training effective (H3); different methodologies of training have heterogeneous effects on performance: experiential methods are more effective than relational and front lesson methods (H5). We discuss the results and derive some policy conclusions
    Keywords: Managerial Training, firm performance, IV-GMM, TMGT
    Date: 2013
  19. By: ITO Keiko; SHIMIZU Junko
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate export competitiveness based on unit labor costs (ULCs) and nominal effective exchange rates (NEERs) for Japan, China, and Korea for the 12 two-digit manufacturing industries for the period 2001-2009. Japan's ULCs either are relatively stable or declining in most industries, while that of Korea shows an upward trend in many industries, with the electrical and optical equipment industry being a major exception. China's ULCs are declining in most industries. Evaluating ULCs on a foreign currency basis, Japan's ULCs increased rapidly during the period of yen appreciation, suggesting that its cost reduction efforts were more than offset by the appreciation of the yen. The results of our empirical analysis suggest that both increases in ULCs and appreciation of the home currency reduce exports by raising the home country's relative prices. The negative impact of ULCs is largest for China, while it is negligible for Japan. However, the negative impact of NEERs is largest for Japan. Moreover, the negative impact of ULCs tends to be larger for machinery-related industries, suggesting that cost competitiveness is particularly important in these industries.
    Date: 2013–11
  20. By: Takanori Ida; Naomi Fukuzawa
    Abstract: This study investigates the effects of large-scale research funding from the Japanese government on the research outcomes of university researchers. To evaluate the effects, we use the difference-in-differences estimator and measure research outcomes in terms of number of papers and citation counts per paper. Our analysis shows that the funding program led to an increase in the number of papers in some fields and an increase in the citation counts in the other fields. A comparison of our estimation results with assessment data obtained from peer reviews showed important differences. Since the characteristics of research vary according to the field, bibliometrics analysis should be used along with the peer review method for a more accurate analysis of research impact.
    Keywords: Research assessment, Difference-in-differences, Government grants, University research, Bibliometrics, Peer review
  21. By: Anabela Botelho (NIMA, Universidade do Minho); Lígia M.Costa Pinto (NIMA, Universidade do Minho); Patricia Sousa (NIMA, Universidade do Minho)
    Abstract: Wind energy is currently one the most important energy sources in the production of electricity. In this study, we use the CVM to elicit the monetary value attached to wind power’s environmental impacts from three different groups of individuals: local residents, residents in a nearby town, and residents outside the area of a wind farm located in Portugal, one of the top 10 countries in the world with the highest cumulative wind power capacity to date. In each case, our empirical analysis employs a novel likelihood function that is constructed to be appropriate for the type of data collected. The main results are supportive of a NYMBY effect, but also indicate that the amount needed to compensate local residents for the negative impacts caused by the wind farm can be raised by the constitution of a compensation fund paid by non-residents, thereby overcoming the inefficiency caused by the NYMBY effect.
    Keywords: Contingent Valuation, uncertainty, renewable energy; Stochastic frontier models; Willingness to pay/accept; hypothetical bias
    JEL: Q50 Q51 C29 Q40 Q58 Q53
    Date: 2013–07
  22. By: Cull, Robert; Xu, Lixin Colin; Yang, Xi; Zhou, Li-An; Zhu, Tian
    Abstract: This paper uses data from a large survey of Chinese firms to investigate whether local government efforts to facilitate market development improve firm efficiency. Both government provision of information about products, markets, and innovation and government assistance in arranging loans are positively associated with firm efficiency. Those private firms with weak access to and knowledge of financial, input, and product markets benefit most from such assistance. These patterns are robust across multiple estimation approaches. Case studies of specific types of market facilitation by local governments are provided. The evidence is consistent with the notion that government facilitation can help some firms overcome market failures in the early stages of development. The paper argues that changing fiscal dynamics that forced local governments to become increasingly self-reliant in generating revenue and a government promotion system based on local economic performance compelled these efforts at market facilitation.
    Keywords: Access to Finance,Debt Markets,Banks&Banking Reform,Economic Theory&Research,Labor Policies
    Date: 2013–11–01
  23. By: Paola Brighi; Valeria Venturelli
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of revenue and geographic diversification on bank performance, also on a risk adjusted basis. Using an unbalanced panel dataset of 3,002 observations relative to Italian banks for the period 2006-2011, the core question is to analyse the effect of geographic and functional diversification across and within both interest and non-interest income and their effect on some principal performance measures. Furthermore in our study we analyse whether certain type of institutions are better able to reap the benefits of diversification analysing performance implications for different categories of banks and if the results have been affected by the financial crisis. The main results suggest that revenue and geographical diversification play a role in determining bank performance. The relative effects appear, however, to be different between mutual and not-mutual banks suggesting different business strategies for different banks. Moreover, in the after crisis period, banks that have been less penalized in terms of riskadjusted profit are those characterised by a gretare focus on non interest income component and the ones more geographically diversified. These findings have strategic implications both for bank managers, regulators and supervisors for the consequences on banks’ performance and stability.
    Keywords: Bank heterogeneity, Revenue diversification, Geographic diversification, Risk adjusted performance, Panel data
    JEL: G21
    Date: 2013–10
  24. By: Gonzalo, Jesus; Olmo, Jose
    Abstract: This paper proposes nonparametric consistent tests of conditional stochastic dominance of arbitrary order in a dynamic setting. The novelty of these tests lies in the nonparametric manner of incorporating the information set. The test allows for general forms of unknown serial and mutual dependence between random variables, and has an asymptotic distribution that can be easily approximated by simulation. This method has good finite-sample performance. These tests are applied to determine investment efficiency between US industry portfolios conditional on the dynamics of the market portfolio. The empirical analysis suggests that telecommunications dominates the other sectoral portfolios under risk aversion.
    Date: 2013–01–01
  25. By: Thieme Claudio (Universidad Diego portales); Prior Diego (Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona); Tortosa-Ausina Emili (INSTITUTO VALENCIANO DE INVESTIGACIONES ECONÓMICAS (Ivie) UNIVERSITY JAUME I); Gempp René (Diego Portales University)
    Abstract: There is consensus in the literature about the need to control for socioeconomic status and other contextual variables at student and school level in the estimation of value added models, for which methodologies rely on hierarchical linear models. However, this approach is problematic because the nature of their estimate is a comparison with a school mean, implying no real incentive for performance excellence. Meanwhile, activity analysis models recently developed to estimate school value added have been unable to control for contextual variables. We propose a robust frontier model to estimate contextual value added which integrates recent advances in the activity analysis literature. We provide an application to a sample of schools in Chile, where reforms have been made in the educational system focusing on the need for accountability measures. Results indicate the general relevance of including contextual variables, and explain the performance differentials found for the three school types.
    Keywords: Efficiency, order-m, school effectiveness, value added.
    JEL: C61 I21 H52
    Date: 2013–11
  26. By: Dang, Hai-Anh H.; King, Elizabeth M.
    Abstract: Few would contest that teachers are a very important determinant of whether students learn in school. Yet, in the face of compelling evidence that many students are not learning what they are expected to learn, how to improve teacher performance has been the focus of much policy debate in rich and poor countries. This paper examines how incentives, both pecuniary and non-pecuniary, influence teacher effort. Using school survey data from Lao PDR, it estimates new measures of teacher effort, including the number of hours that teachers spend preparing for classes and teacher provision of private tutoring classes outside class hours. The estimation results indicate that teachers increase effort in response to non-pecuniary incentives, such as greater teacher autonomy over teaching materials, and monitoring mechanism, such as the existence of an active parent-teacher association and the ability of school principals to dismiss teachers. Methodologically, the paper provides a detailed derivation of a simultaneous ordinary least squares-probit model with school random effects that can jointly estimate teacher work hours and tutoring provision.
    Keywords: Tertiary Education,Education For All,Teaching and Learning,Primary Education,Secondary Education
    Date: 2013–11–01

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