nep-eff New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2015‒04‒02
thirty-one papers chosen by

  2. The innovative input mix. Assessing the importance of R&D and ICT investments for firm performance in manufacturing and services By Marina Rybalka
  3. Firm Efficiency and Input Market Integration: Trade versus FDI By Michele Imbruno
  4. Productivity and Export Market Participation: Evidence from Colombia By Camila Casas; Federico J. Díez; Alejandra González
  5. Innovation and productivity in services and manufacturing : The role of ICT investment By Aboal D.; Tacsir E.
  6. Productivity and Export Market Participation: Evidence from Colombia By Camila Casas; Federico J. Díez; Alejandra González
  7. Assessing conventional and organic citrus farming systems eco-efficiency: a metafrontier directional distance function approach using Life Cycle Analysis. By Mercedes Beltrán Esteve; Ernest Reig Martínez; Vicent Estruch Guitart
  8. Firm heterogeneity in productivity across Europe. What explains what? By Aiello, Francesco; Ricotta, Fernanda
  9. The Impact of Climate Change on Agricultural Productivity: Evidence from Panel Data of Bangladesh By Kazi Iqbal; Abu Siddique
  10. Productivity and Inequality Effects of Rapid Labor Reallocation – Insights from a Meta-Analysis of Studies on Transition By Jan Svejnar; Joanna Tyrowicz; Lucas van der Velde
  11. Disentangling the European Airlines efficiency puzzle:A network data envelopment analysis approach By Meryem Duygun; Diego Prior; Mohamed Shaban; Emili Tortosa-Ausina
  12. Productivity of the English NHS: 2012/13 update By Chris Bojke; Adriana Castelli; Katja Grasic; Andrew Street
  13. Corporate Efficiency in Europe By Hanousek, Jan; Kocenda, Evzen; Shamshur, Anastasiya
  14. Effectiveness of public innovation support in Europe: Does public support foster turnover, employment and labour productivity? By Becker, Lasse
  15. Underlying Energy Efficiency in the US By Massimo Filippini; Lester C Hunt
  16. Inside the Virtuous Cycle between Productivity, Profitability, Investment and Corporate Growth: An Anatomy of China Industrialization By Xiaodan Yu; Giovanni Dosi; Marco Grazzi; Jiasu Lei
  17. On the modeling of size distributions when technologies are complex By Jakub Growiec
  18. R&D Activity and Core Business Efficiency on the Example of Technology Companies By Tomasz L. Nawrocki
  20. Bank-Specific and Industry-Characteristic Determinants of Commercial Bank Profitability: Empirical Study for Indonesia By Abdul Manap Pulungan; Ahmad Erani Yustika
  21. The Strength of Long Ties and the Weakness of Strong Ties: Knowledge diffusion through supply chain networks By TODO Yasuyuki; Petr MATOUS; INOUE Hiroyasu
  22. Modelling and measuring business risk and the resiliency of retail banks By M. Chaffai; M. Dietsch
  23. The Effect of Employment Protection on Labor Productivity By Bjuggren, Carl Magnus
  24. As the market churns : estimates of firm exit and job loss using the World Bank's enterprise surveys By Aga,Gemechu A.; Francis,David C.
  25. Agricultural technology adoption and rice varietal diversity: A Local Average Treatment Effect (LATE) Approach for rural Benin By Bonou, Alice; Diagne, Aliou; Biaou, Gauthier
  26. Severe Air Pollution and Labor Productivity By Li, Teng; Liu, Haoming; Salvo, Alberto
  27. Europe's Long-Term Growth Prospects: With and Without Structural Reforms By Kieran McQuinn; Karl Whelan
  28. Independent Directors and Corporate Performance in China: a Meta-Empirical Study By Wenge Wang
  29. On Competition in the Banking Sector in Poland and Europe Before and During the Crisis / Jak kszta³towa³a siê konkurencja w sektorze bankowym w Polsce i w Europie przed kryzysem i w okresie kryzys By Malgorzata Pawlowska
  30. Efficiency Measures in Regulated Industries: History, Outstanding Challenges and Emerging Solutions By Laurens Cherchye; Bram De Rock; Antonio Estache; Marijn Verschelde
  31. Profitability in India’s Organized Manufacturing Sector: The Role of Technology, Distribution, and Demand By Basu, Deepankar; Das, Debarshi

    Abstract: The purpose of this study is to measure the efficiencies of participation banks, which conduct interest-free banking transactions, and commercial banks within the Turkish finance system and determine whether they have made progress in a year-by-year process or not. In this context, using the continuous financial data between the years 2011 and 2013 belonging to 4 participation banks and 16 public and private commercial banks operating in the banking sector, efficiencies of the banks were measured through the Data Enveloping Analysis and whether or not there was progress in their efficiency on a yearly basis was investigated using the Malmquist Total Factor Productivity Index. According to the results of the analysis conducted using input-output components by adopting the mediation approach, although the efficiency levels of the banks exhibited a slight drop by the years, an increase was observed in their total factor productivities. When the efficiency scores of commercial banks and participation banks are evaluated within themselves, it is seen that with the exception of 2013, the mean efficiency values of participation banks are higher than the mean efficiency values of commercial banks.
    Keywords: Participation Banks, Commercial Banks, Turkish Banking Sector, Data Envelopment Analysis, Malmquist Total Factor Productivity Index, Efficiency.
    JEL: C14 G21
    Date: 2014–07
  2. By: Marina Rybalka (Statistics Norway)
    Abstract: Business innovation is an important driver of productivity growth. In this paper, I assess the importance of R&D and ICT investment for firm performance in the manufacturing and service industries. Explicitly, I use an extended version of the CDM model that treats ICT together with R&D as the main inputs into innovation and productivity, and test it on a large unbalanced panel data set based on the innovation survey for Norway. Four different types of innovation and the number of patent applications are used as innovation output measures. I find that ICT investment is strongly associated with all types of innovation in both sectors, with the result being strongest for product innovation in manufacturing and for process innovation in service industries. The impact of ICT on patenting is only positive in manufacturing. Overall, ICT seems to be less important than R&D for innovation, but more important for productivity. These results support the proposition that ICT is an important driver of productivity growth. Given the high rate of ICT diffusion in Norway, my results also contribute to explaining what is referred to as the ‘Norwegian productivity puzzle’, i.e. the fact that Norway is one of the most productive economies in the OECD despite having relatively low R&D intensity.
    Keywords: Innovation; ICT; R&D; Productivity; CDM model; Manufacturing and Services
    JEL: D24 L60 L80 O3
    Date: 2015–02
  3. By: Michele Imbruno
    Abstract: This paper highlights the crucial role played by international access to intermediate inputs to explain firm-level performance, via two channels simultaneously: trade and FDI. We develop a simple theoretical model showing that trade integration of input market entails an efficiency improvement within firms able to import (gains from input switching) and an efficiency decline within other firms (losses from domestic input availability). At the same time, FDI integration of input market implies non-importers’ efficiency enhancement (gains from input switching) and some ambiguous effects on importers’ efficiency (due to additional losses from foreign input availability). Using firm-level data from the Chinese manufacturing sector over the period 2002-2006, we find some results coherent with our theoretical predictions.
    Keywords: Heterogeneous firms, Trade liberalization, FDI, Intermediate inputs, Productivity JEL Classification: F12, F14, F23
    Date: 2015
  4. By: Camila Casas; Federico J. Díez; Alejandra González
    Abstract: We study the relationship between total factor productivity (TFP) and exporting decisions for Colombian manufacturing firms during 2005-2013. We find that productivity increases a firm's probability of being an exporter, and that exporters have higher productivity, with a premium as high as 85 percent. These findings are robust to several TFP measures. Moreover, we find that not all exporters are equal: firms that export continuously, that export a greater number of products, and/or that export to a larger number of destinations tend to be more productive. We do not find, however, any relationship between productivity and the type of destination or exported product. Finally, we find evidence that future exporters have an ex ante productivity advantage, and (weaker) evidence of TFP increasing after a firm becomes an exporter.
    Keywords: Productivity, exporters, productivity premium, openness.
    JEL: F14 L22 L60
    Date: 2015–03–27
  5. By: Aboal D.; Tacsir E. (UNU-MERIT)
    Abstract: Several studies have highlighted ICT as a driver of firm productivity in developed countries. However, the evidence about the impacts of ICT on services and manufacturing and particularly for developing countries is scarce. This paper focuses on understanding the determinants of investments in ICT at firm level and how this adoption ultimately affects innovation and productivity of Uruguayan services firms vis a vis manufacturing. Results show that ICT investments are more subject to economies of scale than other types of investments, are important for obtaining product or process innovations in services and its absence conspires against non-technological organisational or marketing innovations. Both ICT and other innovation investments are positively associated with productivity in services but only ICT affect productivity in manufacturing. Interestingly, the absence of investment in ICT is associated with lower levels of productivity.
    Keywords: Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis; Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives; Management of Technological Innovation and R&D; Technological Change: Government Policy;
    JEL: O31 O32 D22 O38
    Date: 2015
  6. By: Camila Casas (Banco de la República de Colombia); Federico J. Díez (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston); Alejandra González (Banco de la República de Colombia)
    Abstract: We study the relationship between total factor productivity (TFP) and exporting decisions for Colombian manufacturing firms during 2005-2013. We find that productivity increases a firm's probability of being an exporter, and that exporters have higher productivity, with a premium as high as 85 percent. These findings are robust to several TFP measures. Moreover, we find that not all exporters are equal: firms that export continuously, that export a greater number of products, and/or that export to a larger number of destinations tend to be more productive. We do not find, however, any relationship between productivity and the type of destination or exported product. Finally, we find evidence that future exporters have an ex ante productivity advantage, and (weaker) evidence of TFP increasing after a firm becomes an exporter. Classification JEL: F14, L22, L60.
    Keywords: Productivity, exporters, productivity premium, openness.
    Date: 2015–03
  7. By: Mercedes Beltrán Esteve (Department of Applied Economics II, Universitat de València); Ernest Reig Martínez (Department of Applied Economics II, Universitat de València); Vicent Estruch Guitart (Universitat Politècnica de València)
    Abstract: In this paper, the eco‐efficiency of citrus farms operating under two different conventional and organic technological systems is analyzed. The methodology combines Life Cycle Analysis (LCA), to estimate the environmental impacts associated with the production process, and Data Envelopment Analysis(DEA) to estimate the position of each holding in relation to a frontier formed by the best farming practices. The use of the directional distance function concept allows us to calculate farms’eco‐efficiency scoring with respect to specific environmental impacts, and not only for the whole of them. The metafrontier concept is also used in order to compare the relative eco‐efficiency of each of the two cultivation technologies used. Our results show a wide superiority of the organic farming system in relation to the conventional. An eco‐efficient('green') organic technology represents, in relation to an eco‐efficient use of conventional citrus cultivation techniques, a potential reduction of environmental impacts by 80% without worsening economic performance. In contrast, when the performance of organic and conventional citrus farms is only analyzed in relation to best practices within each system, average eco-efficiency scores are similar for both types of farms.
    Keywords: TFP, business cycle 1501
    JEL: C61 Q12 Q51 Q57
    Date: 2015–01
  8. By: Aiello, Francesco; Ricotta, Fernanda
    Abstract: This paper analyses the TFP heterogeneity of a sample of manufacturing firms operating in seven EU countries (Austria, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Spain and UK). TFP data refer to 2008. The empirical setting is based on the multilevel modelling which provides two main results. Firstly, we show that TFP heterogeneity is largely due to firm-specific features (85% of TFP variability in the empty-model). Interestingly, we find that some key-drivers of TFP (size, family-management, group membership, innovations and human capital) influence heterogeneity in productivity with the expect sign, but do not, on the whole, absorb much of firm-TFP variance, implying that differences in productivity are due to sizable yet unobservable firm characteristics. Secondly, as far the role of localization is concerned, we demonstrate that country-effect is more influential than region-effect in explaining individual productivity. Net of the country-effect, the localisation in different European regions explains about 5% of TFP firm heterogeneity. When considering the case of three individual countries (France, Italy and Spain), location in different regions explains 5.3% of TFP heterogeneity in Italy, while this proportion is lower (3.6%) in France and higher (9.9%) in Spain.
    Keywords: TFP heterogeneity, firm-behavior, localization, European countries, multilevel model
    JEL: C30 D22 D24 L60 R11 R15
    Date: 2014–05–26
  9. By: Kazi Iqbal (Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies); Abu Siddique (Business School, University of Western Australia)
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of climate change on agricultural productivity in Bangladesh for the period 1975-2008 for 23 regions. First, the study relies on descriptive statistics and maps to explore the long term changes at both country and local level in climatic variables such as temperature, rainfall, humidity and sunshine. Second, it uses regression models to estimate the impact of climate change on agricultural productivity. Unlike the existing literature, this study exploits within-region time series variations (regional fixed effect) to estimate the impact of long term changes in climatic variables on agricultural productivity in order to control for regional differences, both observed and unobserved. The results show that long term changes in means and standard deviations of the climatic variables have differential impacts on the productivity of rice and thus the overall impact of climate change on agriculture is not unambiguous.
    Date: 2014
  10. By: Jan Svejnar (Columbia University, CERGE-EI, IZA, CEPR); Joanna Tyrowicz (Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw; National Bank of Poland); Lucas van der Velde (Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw)
    Abstract: From a theoretical perspective the link between the speed and scope of rapid labor reallocation and productivity growth or inequalities remains unclear. Do reallocations with more flows tend to produce higher productivity growth? Does such link appear at the expense of higher inequalities? We explore the rich evidence from earlier studies on worker flows in the period of massive and rapid labor reallocation, i.e. the economic transition from a centrally planned to a market-oriented economy in Central and Eastern Europe. We apply the tools typical for a meta-analysis to verify the empirical regularities between labor flows and productivity growth as well as inequalities. We collected over 450 estimates of job flows from the literature and use these inputs to estimate the short-run and long-run relationship between job flows, labor productivity and inequalities. Our findings suggest relatively weak and short term links with productivity for job destruction/separations. On the other hand, data reveal a strong pattern for inequalities more churning during reallocation is associated with a permanent level efect towards increased Gini indexes.
    Keywords: transition, job creation, job destruction, worker flows, unemployment
    JEL: D21 D24 D92 G21
    Date: 2015
  11. By: Meryem Duygun (University of Hull. Department of Accounting and Finance); Diego Prior (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Business Department); Mohamed Shaban (University of Leicester, Department of Management); Emili Tortosa-Ausina (IVIE, Valencia and Department of Economics, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón, Spain)
    Abstract: In recent years the European airline industry has undergone critical restructuring. It has evolved from a highly regulated market predominantly operated by national airlines to a dynamic, liberalized industry where airline firms compete freely on prices, routes, and frequencies. Although several studies have analyzed performance issues for European airlines using a variety of efficiency measurement methods, virtually none of them has considered two-stage alternatives—not only in this particular European context but in the airline industry in general. We extend the aims of previous contributions by considering a network Data Envelopment Analysis (network DEA) approach which comprises two sub-technologies that can share part of the inputs. Results show that, in general, most of the inefficiencies are generated in the first stage of the analysis. However, when considering different types of carriers several differences emerge—most of the low-cost carriers’ inefficiencies are confined to the first stage. Results also show a dynamic component, since performance differed across types of airlines during the decade 2000–2010.
    Keywords: airlines, network DEA
    JEL: C61 D61 L93
    Date: 2015
  12. By: Chris Bojke (Centre for Health Economics, University of York, UK); Adriana Castelli (Centre for Health Economics, University of York, UK); Katja Grasic (Centre for Health Economics, University of York, UK); Andrew Street (Centre for Health Economics, University of York, UK)
    Abstract: Productivity is one of the key measures against which NHS achievements can be judged and is the focus of this report. We update our previous analyses of NHS productivity growth since 2004/05, focussing on the change in NHS productivity between 2011/12 and 2012/13, the latter financial year being the latest for which data have been made available. NHS productivity growth is measured as the rate of change in outputs over the rate of change of inputs. Positive productivity growth occurs when the relative growth in outputs exceeds the relative growth in inputs. NHS output captures all activity for NHS patients using data from the Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), Reference Cost returns and primary care use survey data. Quality is captured by waiting times, 30-day survival rates, and blood pressure management in primary care. Output growth amounted to 2.34% between 2011/12 and 2012/13, this being the lowest year-on-year growth rate over the full period since 2004/05. This is the first time over the full series in which quality-adjusted output growth has been lower than cost-weighted growth, which amounted to 2.58%. This is because some aspects of quality deteriorated between 2011/12 and 2012/13, with a reduction in survival rates for non-elective patients and further increases in waiting times. NHS inputs include of NHS and agency staff, intermediates and capital. NHS staff input is measured using staff numbers as recorded in the Electronic Staff Record and also from expenditure data. All other inputs are measured by deflating expenditure data by relevant price indices to capture changes in the volume of resource use. We construct two overall measures of NHS inputs, with our preferred “mixed†index using NHS staff numbers and an “indirect†index, which uses expenditure data to calculate NHS staff input. NHS input growth between 2011/12 and 2012/13 was 1.98% if labour input is calculated using NHS staff numbers or 2.63% if using expenditure data. This rate of input growth is relatively low for the series as a whole but it is the largest year-on-year increase since 2009/10. Productivity growth between 2011/12 and 2012/13 is estimated to have been 0.36% based on the mixed input index but -0.28% if based on the indirect input index. If measured using the preferred mixed index, the NHS has delivered overall total factor productivity growth of 10.4% since 2004/05, with 2011/12-2012/13 being the third consecutive period of year-on-year productivity growth.
    Date: 2015–03
  13. By: Hanousek, Jan; Kocenda, Evzen; Shamshur, Anastasiya
    Abstract: Using a stochastic frontier model and a comprehensive dataset, we study factors that affect corporate efficiency in Europe. We find that (i) larger firms are less efficient than smaller firms, (ii) greater leverage contributes to corporate efficiency, and (iii) high competition is less conductive to efficiency than moderate or low competition. In terms of ownership, we find that (iv) efficiency increases when a majority owner must deal with minority shareholders and that (v) domestic majority owners improve efficiency more than foreign majority owners when no minority shareholders are present, but (vi) the opposite is true when minority shareholders hold a substantial fraction of the firm’s equity. In the analysis, we distinguish between a pre-crisis period (2001–2008) and a post-crisis period (2009-2011), and find that our results are sensitive to the period of observation.
    Keywords: efficiency; Europe; firms; ownership structure; panel data; stochastic frontier
    JEL: C33 D24 G32 L60 L80 M21
    Date: 2015–03
  14. By: Becker, Lasse
    Abstract: In the European Union (EU), twenty Member States offer public innovation support for private research and development (R&D) activities through either subsidies or a combination of tax cuts and subsidies. Existing studies show ambiguous results regarding the effectiveness of public innovation support in different countries. Accordingly, following a description of the current public innovation framework in Europe, this paper analyses data from the European Community Innovation Survey concerning the effectiveness of public support. The measures chosen relate to changes in turnover as well as the number of employees and labour productivity (measured as turnover per employee) between 2006 and 2008. The paper finds a positive influence of public innovation support on labour productivity in an innovating company, a negative influence on turnover changes and a negative yet not significant influence on the development of employment. The influences of these factors are very weak, whereas other coefficients such as the money spent on innovative activities clearly show positive effects for all three indicators.
    Keywords: innovation,innovation support,labor productivity,Europe,effectiveness
    JEL: O31 O38 H21
    Date: 2015
  15. By: Massimo Filippini (Centre for Energy Policy and Economics (cepe), ETH Zurich and Department of Economics, University of Lugano); Lester C Hunt (Surrey Energy Economics Centre (SEEC), Department of Economics, University of Surrey)
    Abstract: The promotion of US energy efficiency policy is seen as a very important activity. Generally, the level of energy efficiency of a country or state is approximated by energy intensity, commonly calculated as the ratio of energy use to GDP. However, energy intensity is not an accurate proxy for energy efficiency given that changes in energy intensity are a function of changes in several factors including the structure of the economy, climate, efficiency in the use of resources, behaviour, and technical change. The aim of this paper is to measure persistent and transient underlying energy efficiency for the whole economy of 49 states in the US using a stochastic frontier energy demand approach. A total US energy demand frontier function is estimated using panel data for 49 states over the period 1995 to 2009 using two panel data models: the Mundlak version of the random effects model (which estimates the persistent part of the underlying energy efficiency) and the true random effects model (which estimates the transient part of the underlying energy efficiency). The analysis confirms that energy intensity is not a good indicator of underlying energy efficiency whereas, by controlling for a range of economic and other factors, the measure of persistent underlying energy efficiency obtained via the approach adopted here is. Moreover, the estimates show that although for some states EI might give a reasonable indication of a state’s relative UEE this is not the case for all states, California being a prime example.
    Keywords: US total energy demand; efficiency and frontier analysis; persistent and transient underlying energy efficiency.
    JEL: D D2 Q Q4 Q5
    Date: 2015–02
  16. By: Xiaodan Yu; Giovanni Dosi; Marco Grazzi; Jiasu Lei
    Abstract: This article explores the dynamics of market selection by investigating of the relationships linking productivity, profitability, investment and growth, based on China's manufacturing firm-level dataset over the period 1998-2007. First, we find that productivity variations, rather than relative levels, are the dominant productivity-related determinant of firm growth, and account for 15%-20% of the variance in firms' growth rates. The direct relation between profitability and firm growth is much weaker as it contributes for less than 5% to explain the different patterns of firm growth. On the other hand, the profitability-growth relationship is mediated via investment. Firm's contemporaneous and lagged profitabilities display positive and significant effect on the probability to report an investment spike, and, in turn, investment activity is related to higher firm growth.
    Keywords: Productivity, Market selection, Profitability, Investment spike, Firm growth, Chinese economy
    Date: 2015–03–27
  17. By: Jakub Growiec
    Abstract: The study considers a stochastic R&D process where the invented production technologies consist of a large number n of complementary components. The degree of complementarity is captured by the elasticity of substitution of the CES aggregator function. Drawing from the Central Limit Theorem and the Extreme Value Theory we find, under very general assumptions, that the cross-sectional distributions of technological productivity are well-approximated either by the lognormal, Weibull, or a novel “CES/Normal” distribution, depending on the underlying elasticity of substitution between technology components. We find the tail of the “CES/Normal” distribution to be fatter than the Weibull tail but thinner than the Pareto (power law) one. We numerically assess the rate of convergence of the true technological productivity distribution to the theoretical limit with n.
    Keywords: technological productivity distribution, stochastic R&D, CES, Weibull distribution, lognormal distribution, limiting distribution
    JEL: E23 L11 O47
    Date: 2015
  18. By: Tomasz L. Nawrocki (Silesian University of Technology)
    Abstract: Taking as a basis for discussion the Schumpeter’s innovation theory, this paper analyses the relationship between enterprises activity in the field of research and development and their efficiency at the core business level. This analysis was performed in two ways – with the assumption shift in time between research and development activities and companies business efficiency and without it – using the Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient. The sample was accounted for 252 companies from the technology sector, whose shares are traded on NYSE or NASDAQ, and the analysis time period consisted of three years (2011-2013). Results obtained in the course of analysis generally indicate lack of strong relationship between distinguished categories. Noticeable, but only at moderate level, positive correlation was found in both considered approaches only in respect of relationship between the intensity of expenditures on research and development or y/y change of these expenditures and gross margin on sales.Therefore, it seems to be relevant to extend this research at least in such directions as: identification and characterization of factors determining efficiency of companies research and development activities, as well as examination considered relationship taking into account business diversity within the sector and wider time shift between realized research and development activities and various measures of core business efficiency.
    Keywords: research and development, core business efficiency, technology sector
    JEL: L25 L63 L86 O32
    Date: 2015–03
  19. By: Davide Vannoni (University of Torino)
    Abstract: The paper models the determinants of inefficiency in a framework in which politically connected local monopolies organize the provision of a local public service. We first use a standard career concern approach of political agency to model the relation between voters observability of the managerial behavior and political accountability. We then enrich our setting, by explicitly introducing corruption. Following the World Banks denition (World Bank, 1997), we regard corruption as the abuse of public office for private gain. Using Dal Bò and Rossi's (2007) approach, we then characterize a corrupt environment as one where private benets from diverting managerial effort away from the productive process are substantial . We show that corruption distorts managerial effort incentives, leading to an increase in the extent of inefficiency. We derive the implication that inefficiency is greater for waste operators located in more corrupt regions, and in regions where voters are less informed. We test these predictions using a rich unique micro dataset on the solid waste collection and disposal activity in Italy, which includes more than fivevhundred municipalities observed in the years 2004-2006. We use a stochasticvcost frontier approach to analyze the e¤ects of accountability and corruption on the costs of providing municipal solid waste (MSW) services throughout Italy. We measure accountability by newspapers readership and electoral participation, and corruption by the number of criminal charges against the State, public governments and social institutions. The empirical evidence supports our predictions. We find that both accountability and corruption have an impact, in the expected direction, on the costs of MSW services. Moreover, by enriching our cost frontier specication, we obtain some interesting additional insights. In particular, we find that the impact of accountability on reducing inefficiency is smaller or even disappears when municipalities organize the service in-house or join a intermunicipal consortium, while corruption is less of harm to efficiency when municipalities are ruled by left-wing parties.
    Keywords: corruption, accountability efficiency, solid waste
    JEL: D24 D73 Q53
    Date: 2014–07
  20. By: Abdul Manap Pulungan (Supervisory Board of Bank Indonesia); Ahmad Erani Yustika (Supervisory Board of Bank Indonesia)
    Abstract: This study discusses the influence of a series of bank-specific factors such as CAR (Capital Adequacy Ratio), OEOI (Operations Expences to Operations Income), NPL (Non Performing Loan), and FBI (Fee-based Income) on ROA as a profitability proxy. Also studied whether commercial banks probability affected by the concentration (Structure Conduct Performance, SCP) or efficiency (Efficiency Hypothesis, HE). Share of Third Party Funds (STPF) is variable proxy of SCP, while the OEOI proxy of HE. By using panel data procedures of the 111 commercial banks during 2005 to 2011, this research concludes that CAR and FBI have significant effect with positive sign on ROA, while OEIO and NPL significant with negative sign. STPF does not significantly affect on ROA so SCP theory as a proxy for the concentration is rejected, on the other hand, this research accepts the HE theory that focuses on the efficiency.
    Keywords: profitability; structure conduct performance; efficiency hypothesis
    JEL: E50
    Date: 2014–10
  21. By: TODO Yasuyuki; Petr MATOUS; INOUE Hiroyasu
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of the structure of supply chain networks on productivity and innovation capability through knowledge diffusion, using large firm-level panel data for Japan. We find that ties with distant suppliers improve productivity, as measured by sales per worker, possibly attributed to intermediates from distant firms embodying more diversified knowledge than from neighboring firms. Ties with neighboring clients also improve productivity, which may be a result of diffusion of disembodied knowledge from neighboring clients being more effective than from distant clients. By contrast, ties with distant suppliers and clients improve innovative capability, as measured by the number of patent applications, suggesting the importance of a diversity of knowledge from distant firms for innovation. In addition, the density of a firm's ego network, which is measured by how densely its supply chain partners transact with each other, is found to have a negative effect on productivity and innovative capability, implying knowledge redundancy in dense networks. Overall, our results emphasize the importance of diversified partners in knowledge diffusion through supply chain networks.
    Date: 2015–03
  22. By: M. Chaffai; M. Dietsch
    Abstract: The paper uses recent developments of the methodology of efficiency frontiers to provide an original modeling of the risk of volatility of banking profits which relies on the estimation of a profit frontier. This methodology allows taking into account coordinated adjustments of banks’ costs to revenues as well as the absence of such adjustments. The study uses data of more than ninety French institutions running a retail banking business model over the period 1993 to 2012. Results confirm the resiliency of retail banks in crisis period. The decrease in profitability seems largely sustainable even if case of severe shocks. Thus, in case of a large drop in the banks’ lending activity, profit decreases moderately if costs are adjusted quickly, more largely if they are not. A shock on the provision of liquidity services shows less significant effects. In case where banks cannot adjust operating costs, only a very strong shock precipitating banks in the situation of the 5% less profitable could destroy completely yearly profits.
    Keywords: Bank solvency, Retail Banking, Business Risk, Efficiency Frontier Methodology, Profit Function.
    JEL: G21 D24
    Date: 2014
  23. By: Bjuggren, Carl Magnus (Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN))
    Abstract: The theoretical predictions of how employment protection affects firm productivity are ambiguous. In this paper I study the effect of employment protection rules on labor productivity using micro data on Swedish firms. A reform of the employment protection rules in 2001 made it possible for small firms with less than eleven employees to exempt two workers from the seniority rules. I exploit the reform as a natural experiment. My results indicate that increased labor market flexibility increases labor productivity. The increase appears to be driven mainly by the older and the smallest firms. It is not explained by capital intensity or the educational level of workers.
    Keywords: Employment Protection; Labor Market Regulations; Labor Productivity; Last-in-First-out Rules
    JEL: D22 J23 J24 J32 J38 K31 M51
    Date: 2015–03–16
  24. By: Aga,Gemechu A.; Francis,David C.
    Abstract: This paper uses a unique data set of panel firms from the World Bank's Enterprise Surveys in 47 economies, to provide estimates of the patterns of firm exit, and analyzes various firm characteristics and conditions under which firms leave the market. Firms'labor productivity and age are robustly associated with a lower likelihood of exit, consistent with conceptions of creative destruction and findings elsewhere in the literature. These findings are robust across several specifications. However, the effects are mitigated by other factors, such as use of bank financing and the presence of limited liability. Although firm size does appear to matter, its effect is lessened after accounting for labor productivity. The paper also provides basic estimates of job loss attributable to firm exit, estimating that on average 3 to 4 percent of private sector employment is lost per annum due to firm exit. Because of the challenges of data collection, the analysis relies on a necessarily conservative definition of exit and provides a framework for future work on utilizing such periodic survey panels to estimate the relative patterns of firm attrition and the associated job loss.
    Keywords: Labor Markets,E-Business,Microfinance,Environmental Economics&Policies,Banks&Banking Reform
    Date: 2015–03–23
  25. By: Bonou, Alice; Diagne, Aliou; Biaou, Gauthier
    Abstract: The aim of this study was to assess the impact of adoption of new high-yielding varieties (NERICA) of rice on its varietal diversity in Benin. The database was from Impact Assessment unit of AfricaRice and concerns 304 producers of rice. Overall the study covered twenty-four villages over three districts: Dassa-Zounmè, Glazoué and Savalou. Data analysis was carried out using the econometric approach based on the Local Average Effect of Treatment (LATE) framework. Overall, estimation of impact showed that at village level the indexes of in-situ (on farm) conservation of varietal diversity of rice are the same in NERICA and Non-NERICA villages. Moreover, at farmer level, the average impact of NERICA adoption on number of modern rice varieties of the sub-population of NERICA potential adopters is 0.8. NERICA’s rice varieties had positively impacted the in situ conservation of varietal diversity. Our findings indicated that it is worth extending diffusion of NERICA varieties in Benin.
    Keywords: Adoption, LATE, NERICA, varietal diversity, rice, Crop Production/Industries, Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods,
    Date: 2013–09
  26. By: Li, Teng (National University of Singapore); Liu, Haoming (National University of Singapore); Salvo, Alberto (National University of Singapore)
    Abstract: We examine day-to-day fluctuations in worker-level output over 15 months for a panel of 98 manufacturing workers at a plant located in an industrial city in Hebei province, north China. Long-term workers earn piece-rate wages, with no base pay or minimum pay, for homogeneous tasks performed over fixed 8-hour shifts. Over the sample period, ambient fine-particle (PM2.5) mass concentrations measured at an outdoor air monitor located 2 km from the plant ranged between 10 and 773 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3, 8-hour means), variation that is an order of magnitude larger than what is observed in the rich world today. We document large reductions in productivity, of the order of 15%, over the first 200 µg/m3 rise in PM2.5 concentrations, with the drop leveling off for further increases in fine-particle pollution. A back-of-the-envelope calculation suggests that labor productivity across 190 Chinese cities could rise by on average 4% per year were the distributions of hourly PM2.5 truncated at 25 µg/m3. We also find reduced product quality as pollution rises. Our model allows for selection into work attendance, though we do not find particle pollution to be a meaningful determinant of non-attendance, which is very low in our labor setting. Subsequent research should verify the external validity of our findings.
    Keywords: air pollution, labor productivity, labor supply, PM2.5, environmental damage
    JEL: J24 Q52
    Date: 2015–03
  27. By: Kieran McQuinn (Economic and Social Research Institute); Karl Whelan (University College Dublin)
    Abstract: Even before the financial crisis of 2007/08, there were significant questions about Europe's long-term growth prospects. After a long period of catching up with US levels of labour productivity, euro area productivity growth had, from the mid-1990s onwards, fallen significantly behind. Using data for the period 1970 to 2006, McQuinn and Whelan (2008) identified declining rates of total factor productivity (TFP) growth and weaker capital accumulation as areas for concern in an European context. In updating this earlier analysis, we find that the growth prospects of the euro area have deteriorated further. With TFP growth contin- uing to fall, Europe's demographics are now also contributing to a decline in the workforce. Against this backdrop, we provide a long-term projection for euro area GDP based on unchanged policies and discuss the possible impacts of certain structural reforms including potential changes in the unemployment rate, pension reform and the successful implementation of a significant wider programme of regulatory reform that boosts TFP growth. We argue that, even with the successful adoption of these measures, the European economy is still likely to grow at a slower pace than it has in the past.
    Keywords: Growth, Euro Area, Demographics, Structural Reforms
    JEL: O40 O47 O16
    Date: 2015–03–20
  28. By: Wenge Wang (University of Auckland)
    Abstract: This article reviews empirical studies on the relationship between independent directors and firm performance in Chinese listed companies. The purpose is to generalize empirical evidence on the theoretical claim that independent directors can improve firm performance by performing their monitoring role over management as expected by Chinese regulators. To fulfil this purpose, this article conducts a meta-empirical study by collecting 30 sample articles of existing empirical studies on the relationship between independent directors and firm performance in Chinese listed companies after the independent director institution has been introduced from corporate America to corporate China. The meta-empirical study is to review and generalize an integrated empirical evidence whether independent directors can improve firm performance in Chinese listed companies or not. Based on the statistical data from 30 collected sample articles, this article identifies four categories (board independence, independent directors’ characteristic, background and compensation) that authors of 30 sample articles use to test the correlation between independent directors and firm performance in Chinese listed companies. From the integrated empirical evidence from 30 collected sample articles, this article finds on the whole that board independence has no significant impact on firm performance, that independent directors’ characteristics and background have a controversial effect on firm performance and that independent directors’ compensation has a significant positive effect on firm performance. This may suggest that independent directors may primarily play an advisory role but not a monitoring role in Chinese listed companies.
    Keywords: Independent directors, corporate performance, Chinese listed companies
    JEL: K22 G38
    Date: 2014–07
  29. By: Malgorzata Pawlowska
    Abstract: In the past decades, the banking sector has come to be known in literature as the banking industry as it was geared to increasing profits, banks were growing, and banking products developed dynamically. It was believed that competition in the banking sector makes banks more efficient and stimulates financial innovation opening new markets. The financial crisis of 2007–2008 has sparked the interest of researchers and politicians in competition in the banking sector and its impact on the stability of the financial sector and overall economic growth. However, researchers cannot agree whether more competition improves or hinders stability.The paper is comprised of three sections and a summary. The first section discusses the concept of competition in the banking sector as well as measures of competition. The second section is a review of literature on competition in the banking sector and its determinants. The third section presents the results of research on competition in the EU, including my own research as well as other research. The paper concludes with a short summary.This publication was presented by Ma³gorzata Paw³owska during the 134th mBank-CASE Seminar "The global financial crisis: changes in competition in the banking sector in Europe, the role of regulation and intervention by governments and central banks".
    Keywords: banking and finance, competition, financial services, mergers and acquisitions, market structure, efficiency, credit market, European Union, banking regulation
    JEL: G18 G20 G21 G28 G29
    Date: 2015–01
  30. By: Laurens Cherchye; Bram De Rock; Antonio Estache; Marijn Verschelde
    Date: 2015–03
  31. By: Basu, Deepankar (Department of Economics, University of Massachusetts); Das, Debarshi (Indian Institute of Technology, Gowahati; )
    Abstract: Using aggregate data from the Annual Survey of Industries, we analyze profitability in India’s organized manufacturing sector from 1982-83 to 2012-13. Over the whole period of analysis, the rate of profit grew at about 1 percent per annum, primarily driven by a rising share of profits. We use structural break tests to identify medium and short run regimes. We find two medium run regimes, one of declining profitability (1982-83 to 2001-02), and another of growing profitability (2001-02 to 2012-13). We find six short run regimes, of which only two are periods of rising profitability, 1987-88 to 1996-97, and 2001-02 to 2007-08. All other short run periods have witnessed declining profitability. Profit rate decomposition analysis shows that both in the medium and short run, technological factors have been the most important determinants of changes in profitability.
    Keywords: Organized manufacturing; India; profitability; technology and distribution
    JEL: B51 E11
    Date: 2015

General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.