nep-eff New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2015‒05‒22
sixteen papers chosen by

  1. How to assess agricultural water productivity?: looking for water in the agricultural productivity and efficiency literature By Scheierling, S. M.
  2. Technological Progress and Diffusion: Decomposing Total Factor Productivity Growth in Brazilian Manufacturing By Armando Castelar Pinheiro
  3. Measuring and Explaining Total Factor Productivity Growth: Brazilian Manufacturing in the Seventies By Armando Castelar Pinheiro
  4. Productivity in the slow lane?: the role of information and communications technology By Wang, J. Christina; Pearson, Alison
  5. Assessing European firms’ exports and productivity distributions : The CompNet trade module By Antoine Berthou; Emmanuel Dhyne; Matteo Bugamelli; Ana-Maria Cazacu; Calin-Vlad Demian; Peter Harasztosi; Tibor Lalinsky; Jaanika Meriküll; Filippo Oropallo; Ana Cristina Soares
  6. The Effects of Remittances on Output per Worker in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Production Function Approach By Ssozi, John; Asongu, Simplice
  7. Linkages of Macroeconomic Indicators of Competitiveness on the Example of Export and Transformational Performance in Selected Countries of the Visegrad Group Plus By Jan Nevima; Ingrid Majerová
  8. Does Education Raise Productivity and Wages Equally? The Moderating Roles of Age, Gender and Industry By Rycx, Francois; Saks, Yves; Tojerow, Ilan
  9. Productivity lessons for the Asian region By Jungsoo Park, Lawrence Lau
  10. Decomposing the net efficiency of Active Labor Market Programs By Dominik Sliwicki
  11. Energy Efficiency Improvement and Technical Changes in Japanese Industries, 1955-2012 By KONISHI Yoko; NOMURA Koji
  12. Total Factor Productivity Growth and Export-led Strategies: Reviewing the Cross-country Evidence By Armando Castelar Pinheiro
  13. Social capital as a key driver of productivity growth of the economy: across-countries comparison By Elzbieta Janton-Drozdowska; Maria Majewska
  14. Technical Efficiency in Brazilian Manufacturing Establishments: Results for 1970 and 1980 By Armando Castelar Pinheiro
  15. Multilevel empirics for small banks in local markets By Aiello, Francesco; Bonanno, Graziella
  16. Paving the way for better telecom performance: Evidence from the telecommunication sector in MENA countries By Riham Ahmed Ezzat

  1. By: Scheierling, S. M.
    Date: 2014
  2. By: Armando Castelar Pinheiro
    Date: 2015–01
  3. By: Armando Castelar Pinheiro
    Date: 2015–01
  4. By: Wang, J. Christina (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston); Pearson, Alison (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston)
    Abstract: As the current recovery matures in the United States, evidence is mounting that total factor productivity (TFP), the typical measure of technological change, has moved back into the slow lane. This study uses industry data to explore the extent to which the acceleration in TFP in the late 1990s and early 2000s and the subsequent deceleration are attributable to unmeasured investment by firms to take full advantage of the new capabilities made possible by information and communications technology (ICT).
    Keywords: productivity: TFP; MFP; information technology; ICT; intangible capital
    JEL: E23
    Date: 2014–12–22
  5. By: Antoine Berthou (Banque de France); Emmanuel Dhyne (National Bank of Belgium); Matteo Bugamelli (Banca d’Italia); Ana-Maria Cazacu (Banca Nationala a României); Calin-Vlad Demian (European Central Bank); Peter Harasztosi (Magyar Nemzeti Bank); Tibor Lalinsky (Národná banka Slovenska); Jaanika Meriküll (Eesti Pank); Filippo Oropallo (ISTAT); Ana Cristina Soares (Banco de Portugal)
    Abstract: This paper provides a new cross-country evaluation of competitiveness, focusing on the linkages between productivity and export performance among European economies. We use the information compiled in the Trade module of CompNet to establish new stylized facts regarding the joint distributions of the firm-level exports performance and productivity in a panel of 15 countries, 23 manufacturing sectors during the 2000’s. We confirm that exporters are more productive than nonexporters. However, this productivity premium is rising with the export experience of firms, with permanent exporters being much more productive than starters. At the intensive margin, we show that both the level and the growth of firm-level exports rise with firm productivity, and that the bulk of aggregate exports in each country are made by a small number of highly productive firms. Finally, we show that during the crisis, the growth of exports by high productive firms sustained the current account adjustment of European “stressed” economies. This last result confirms that the shape of the productivity distribution within each country can have important consequences from the point of view of the dynamics of aggregate trade patterns.
    Keywords: Firm-level exports, productivity, firm heterogeneity
    JEL: F10 F14
    Date: 2015–05
  6. By: Ssozi, John; Asongu, Simplice
    Abstract: This paper uses a production function to examine the channels through which remittances affect output per worker in 31 Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) countries from 1980-2010. We find that remittances directly increase output per worker if complemented with education. The indirect effects vary with the economic characteristics of the recipient nations: while remittances have increased human capital among the low-income nations, among the upper-middle-income nations, they have mostly increased total factor productivity, but are still inversely related to factor inputs among the lower-middle-income nations of SSA. Finally, remittances are more effective when institutional risk is reducing.
    Keywords: remittances, output per worker, total factor productivity, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: F22 F24 F35 F43 O15 O16 O43 O55
    Date: 2014–08
  7. By: Jan Nevima (Departament of Economics and Public Administration, School of Business Administration, Silesian University); Ingrid Majerová (Departament of Economics and Public Administration, School of Business Administration, Silesian University)
    Abstract: Export performance and transformational performance are some of indicators for measuring outputs through which macroeconomic competitiveness is reported. The first one shows the productivity of the export and the second one value added in foreign trade. This paper deals with the relationship of them in three selected countries – Czech Republic, Poland and Austria during the period 1995-2010. These countries belong to the members of Visegrad Group plus and are examined for two reasons: the first is geographic proximity and the second is the heterogeneous size, which plays important role. While the Czech Republic and Austria belongs to the small economies whose openness should be large (and research results should therefore be similar), Poland is ranked to the economies of medium size with an expected lower level of openness. It is considered that increasing productivity of foreign trade tend to increasing its value added and thus contribute to improvement of macroeconomic competitiveness. The observations were being proven by using the correlation and regression analysis. The positive relationship between export and transformational performance was found in all analyzed
    Keywords: macroeconomic competitiveness, export performance, transformational performance, comparison, correlation, regression analysis
    JEL: F14 O11 O57
    Date: 2015–05–08
  8. By: Rycx, Francois (Free University of Brussels); Saks, Yves (National Bank of Belgium); Tojerow, Ilan (Free University of Brussels)
    Abstract: The labour market situation of low-educated people is particularly critical in most advanced economies, especially among youngsters and women. Policies aiming to increase their employability either try to foster their productivity and/or to decrease their wage cost. Yet, the evidence on the misalignment between education-induced productivity gains and corresponding wage cost differentials is surprisingly thin, inconclusive and subject to various econometric biases. We estimate the impact of education on productivity, wage costs and productivity-wage gaps (i.e. profits) using rich Belgian linked employer-employee panel data. Findings, based on the generalised method of moments (GMM) and Levinsohn and Petrin (2003) estimators, show a significant upward-sloping profile between education and wage costs, on the one hand, and education and productivity, on the other. They also systematically highlight that educational credentials have a stronger impact on productivity than on wage costs. This 'wage compression effect', robust across industries, is found to disappear among older cohorts of workers and to be more pronounced among women than men. Overall, findings suggest that particular attention should be devoted to the productivity to wage cost ratio of low-educated workers, especially when they are young and female, but also to policies favouring gender equality in terms of remuneration and career advancement.
    Keywords: education, labour costs, productivity, linked panel data
    JEL: C33 I21 J24 J31
    Date: 2015–05
  9. By: Jungsoo Park, Lawrence Lau
    Abstract: This study investigates how the patterns of productivity growth have changed over the past few decades for the Asian economies in comparison with the advanced economies. The findings indicate that the Asian economies are in the process of transition in terms of pattern of growth. It seems that the 4 NIEs have already transitioned from input-based growth to productivity-based growth, and the remaining Asian economies are starting to show signs of transition in the past decade. Scrutinizing the recent trends in human capital, R&D, patent statistics, and inward FDIs, they all indicate that the productivity growth will be stronger in the Asian region than before and will constitute the major basis for growth.
    Keywords: total factor productivity, Asian economies, economic growth
    JEL: O47 O57
    Date: 2015–04
  10. By: Dominik Sliwicki (Statistical Office in Bydgoszcz, University of Economy in Bydgoszcz)
    Abstract: Each state intervention in the labor market must be evaluated at the end in terms of efficiency. It is especially important during periods when the resources allocated for this purpose are limited. The most commonway to verify it, is to estimate the gross efficiency. The gross efficiency is the percentage of unemployed who moved to employment following the end of the program. Gross efficiency indicators contain a number of apparent effects that distort the effect of intervention. Therefore we estimate net efficiency indicators, which reflects the actual effect of state intervention in the labor market. The aim of this paper is to estimate the net efficiency indicator of active labor market programs using the Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition. Analysis will be carried out using data sets of unemployed participating and not participating in active labor market programs.
    Keywords: Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition, net efficiency of active labor program
    JEL: C21 C25 J68
    Date: 2015–05
  11. By: KONISHI Yoko; NOMURA Koji
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to analyze the sources of energy efficiency improvement in Japanese industries over the period 1955-2012, based on the new estimates of substitutions of KLEM (capital, labor, energy, and materials) inputs and the biases of technical changes. The first advantage of our analysis is that we apply the framework of econometric modeling developed in Jin and Jorgenson (2010), which provides a more flexible treatment of technology as an unobservable or latent variable. The second advantage is that we develop industry-level data of the quality-adjusted outputs and KLEM inputs for 35 non-government industries in Japan, maintaining as much consistency as possible with the Japanese System of National Accounts.Our industry data indicate that energy efficiencies in most Japanese industries worsened before the oil embargo in 1973, reflecting the stabilization of oil prices relative to the increasing prices of capital and labor. The period from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s was the golden age, in which energy efficiencies improved considerably mainly due to the substitution effects caused by the rapid increases in energy prices. The opportunities to involve the energy-saving technical change diminished until the late 1990s, and the bias of technology changed to energy-using in the 2000s in most industries. This indicates that it will be much harder for Japanese industries to improve their energy efficiencies in the future, compared to the past experiences during the golden age, not only from higher costs for substitutions from energy to other inputs, but also from our projected bias of technical changes for energy until 2030.
    Date: 2015–05
  12. By: Armando Castelar Pinheiro
    Abstract: In this paper we review, examine and comment the empirical li terature that relies on cross-country statistical analyses to show that export orientation has a positive and significant impact on total factor productivity growth. We comment the work reviewed along four lines. First, we address the question of properly identifying the degree of export bias of an economy and the ways by which exports and growth are related. Second, we consider the sensitivity of the results to sample and period selection. Third, we review the evidence with respect to the direct íon of causali ty between export and output growth. Finally, we extend the analysis beyond the single-equation cross-country regression model to see the relevance of specification problems. Our main conclusion is that, although adequate to search for stylized facts, the cross-country model is not the best way to examine the association between total factor productivity growth and trade orientation.
    Date: 2015–01
  13. By: Elzbieta Janton-Drozdowska (Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan); Maria Majewska (Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan)
    Abstract: The aim of this work was to show the possible impact of social capital on productivity of the economy. That impact can be measured by such indicators of productivity of the economy as used in our study: the GDP, the total value added of the economy (TVE), and the GNI per total labour force. Thus, this paper was organized as follows: its first part presents the relationship between the development of social capital and productivity growth of the country in the light of the economic development theory. In this context it is pointed out that the significance of social capital as a component of the productivity potential of a given country increases when such country moves to the next stages of economic development. Therefore, social capital becomes a very important driver of the upgrading of national incomes in those countries, in which competitive advantages are based primarily on intellectual capital assets. The other part of the paper describes the methodology and the results of a research conducted on a group of 100 countries in the years 2012-2013 with an aim to illustrate the link between social capital and productivity of the economy as a whole referred to, or indicated, in the first part of the study. The results of the research allowed us to formulate a conclusion that without an appropriate ethical behaviour, not only in business, the productivity growth is hampered because it translates into a lower level of trust and unwillingness to cooperate. In other words, as, among others, W. Bartoszewski stressed, "it is worth to be decent".
    Keywords: welfare, social capital, knowledge economy
    JEL: I31 O11 O15 O3
    Date: 2015–05
  14. By: Armando Castelar Pinheiro
    Date: 2015–01
  15. By: Aiello, Francesco; Bonanno, Graziella
    Abstract: Banking is increasingly a-spatial. However, the environment matters for small banks. Indeed, they are embedded in narrowed markets and hence benefit from proximity to their member-customers. By referring to multilevel approach, this article aims at measuring how much the performance of Italian mutual-cooperative banks is determined by both geographical (provincial level) and individual characteristics (small bank level). The effect of local markets explains 28.27% of bank heterogeneity in the empty multilevel model and 33% in the most extended model. Moreover, it is found that bank efficiency increases with market concentration and demand density and decreases with branching in local markets.
    Keywords: Multilevel model; mutual-cooperative banks; local markets; cost efficiency
    JEL: C13 C21 D00 G21 R19
    Date: 2015–05–16
  16. By: Riham Ahmed Ezzat (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne & Faculty of Economics and Political Science - Université du Caire)
    Abstract: Since the 1980s, developing countries started adopting telecom reforms due to pressures from international institutions. However, Middle East and North African (MENA) countries lagged in adopting such reforms. Even after introducing telecom reforms in the MENA region beginning in 1995, not all countries became better off in terms of various performance indicators. Therefore, this paper empirically assesses the effects of regulation, privatization and liberalization reforms, as well as their simultaneous presences, in the telecommunication sector on the sector's performance using a sample of 17 MENA countries for the period 1995-2010. We assume that different reforms are affected by institutional, political and economic variables with respect to the level of democracy, the legal origin, the natural resources rents per country and the year of independence from colonization. We correct for the endogeneity of telecom reforms, and we use IV-2SLS (Instrumental Variable-Two Stages Least Squares) estimation to analyze their effect on telecom performance in terms of access, productivity and affordability. We find that the privatization of the main incumbent operator and the fixed-line market's liberalization affect the sector's performance negatively in terms of fixed access and affordability. Moreover, we find that the simultaneous presence of an independent regulator and a privatized incumbent helps to eliminate the drawbacks on the sector performance resulting from privatization. However, the simultaneous presences of the other reforms in terms of regulation-competition and privatization-fixed competition do not help to improve the sector's performance
    Keywords: Regulation; privatization; competition; Telecom industry; MENA region
    JEL: L11 L14 L33 L43 L51 L96 O38 O50
    Date: 2015–04

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