nep-eff New Economics Papers
on Efficiency and Productivity
Issue of 2015‒12‒28
twelve papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
Università degli Studi di Verona

  1. Chasing After the Frontier in Agricultural Productivity By Jules-Daniel Wurlod; Derek Eaton
  2. Performance Differences between Exporters and Non-Exporters: the Case of Portugal By Diana Alexandra Gonçalves Costa; Ana Teresa Cunha de Pinho Tavares Lehmann
  3. Warehouse performance measurement: classification and mathematical expressions of indicators By Francielly Staudt; Maria Di Mascolo; Gülgün Alpan; Carlos M. Taboada Rodriguez
  4. Productivity and Organization in Portuguese Firms By Lorenzo Caliendo; Giordano Mion; Luca David Opromolla; Esteban Rossi-Hansberg
  5. Empirical studies on the impact of ICT usage on employment in Europe By Federico Biagi; Martin Falk
  6. Measuring trends and cycles in industrial production in Norway 1896-1948 By Jan Tore Klovland
  7. The impact of the European Emission Trading Scheme on multiple measures of economic performance By Giovanni Marin; Claudia Pellegrin; Marianna Marino
  8. Productivity spillovers in the GVC. The case of Poland and the New EU Member States By Jan Hagemejer
  9. Accounting for Natural Capital in Productivity of the Mining and Oil and Gas Sector By Wang, Weimin; Adams, Patrick
  10. Environmental regulation and sustainable competitiveness: Evaluating the role of firm-level green investments in the context of the Porter hypothesis By Stöver, Jana; Weche, John P.
  11. Update of Industrial Equipment and its Productivity Implication in Japan in the 1950s: "Industrial Rationalization" in the iron and steel industry (Japanese) By OKAZAKI Tetsuji; KORENAGA Takafumi
  12. Weak and Strong cross-sectional dependence: a panel data analysis of international technology diffusion By Cem Ertur; Antonio Musolesi

  1. By: Jules-Daniel Wurlod; Derek Eaton
    Abstract: This paper explores international productivity patterns in agriculture. We test whether countries higher productivity growth has been experienced by countries that were initially further from the technological frontier. Based on a panel of 84 countries at various levels of development, we find support for convergence among OECD countries but divergence in our sample at large over the period 1960-2010. We then test whether technological catch-up is conditional on absorptive capacities and domestic investments in R&D. While agricultural research intensity has a significant effect on labor productivity growth, the size of this effect decreases the further the country is from the frontier. We calculate a threshold level for the effectiveness of research intensity: increased R&D contributes to catching up to the frontier for those countries with a distance to the frontier less than 22. We also test for additional factors affecting productivity growth, and find that secondary education plays a strong role in less developed countries, while trade openness appears to have had a positive effect on productivity in middle income countries. On the other hand, there is little evidence of much effect, either positive or negative from IPR protection. Of perhaps greater interest is the apparent impact of economic growth outside of agriculture in driving agricultural productivity improvements.
    JEL: O13 O33 Q11 Q16 Q18
    Date: 2015–11
  2. By: Diana Alexandra Gonçalves Costa (Faculdade de Economia - U.Porto); Ana Teresa Cunha de Pinho Tavares Lehmann (CEF.UP, Faculdade de Economia - U.Porto)
    Abstract: In the recent economic context in most developed economies, marked by a strong crisis and contraction of domestic demand, internationalization has been an imperative of survival for most companies. This paper aims to find out if there are significant performance differences between exporters and non-exporters in Portugal and if those performance differences vary according to the various measures of performance used in the study. This is relevant since extant literature leads to contrasting findings in the aspects under analysis (productivity and profitability) and because there are no studies on this theme focused solely on the Portuguese case. Still, most of the literature agrees that exporters display superior productivity, larger size and greater age than non-exporters, as well as that they pay higher wages to their workers. Regarding profitability, no clear pattern has emerged yet between these two types of firm. In order to test different hypotheses, with a sample of Portuguese manufacturing firms and considering the period 2008 to 2012, we perform OLS and Pooled OLS regressions for two measures: productivity and profitability. For productivity, the results are clear: being an exporter per se has a positive impact. This means that, in our sample, exporters are more productive than their purely domestic counterparts. For profitability, whilst the results mostly confirm our hypotheses, they are not as consistent as those for the other measure. Our findings are overall in line with the majority of the literature reviewed and the hypotheses postulated.
    Keywords: Exporters; Non-exporters; Performance; Productivity; Profitability; Portugal.
    JEL: F14 F23
    Date: 2015–12
  3. By: Francielly Staudt (UFSC - Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina [Florianópolis], G-SCOP_GCSP - GCSP - G-SCOP - Laboratoire des sciences pour la conception, l'optimisation et la production - UJF - Université Joseph Fourier - Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble (INPG) - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Maria Di Mascolo (G-SCOP_GCSP - GCSP - G-SCOP - Laboratoire des sciences pour la conception, l'optimisation et la production - UJF - Université Joseph Fourier - Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble (INPG) - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Gülgün Alpan (G-SCOP_GCSP - GCSP - G-SCOP - Laboratoire des sciences pour la conception, l'optimisation et la production - UJF - Université Joseph Fourier - Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble (INPG) - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Carlos M. Taboada Rodriguez (UFSC - Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina [Florianópolis])
    Abstract: Literature about warehouse performance focuses mainly on the analysis of indicator results, and less attention is given to metric definitions and measurement. This situation generates confusions in the indicator definitions, and different measurements for the same performance indicators could be made by distinct authors. In order to improve this measurement, this paper makes a synthesis of the measures found in literature to evaluate warehouse performance, defining their boundaries and equations. The indicators are classified and grouped according to the dimensions of time, quality, cost and productivity. In order to maintain consistency among metrics from different warehouse areas, a standard warehouse is defined with its layout, activities and indicators measurement units. Then, the indicator definitions found in the literature are analyzed, considering the measurement units defined in the standard warehouse, in order to state indicators with mathematical expressions. The result is a well-defined set of metrics available to companies for a more accurate warehouse management.
    Keywords: warehouse,performance measurement,indicator,metrics
    Date: 2014–08–24
  4. By: Lorenzo Caliendo; Giordano Mion; Luca David Opromolla; Esteban Rossi-Hansberg
    Abstract: The productivity of firms is, at least partly, determined by a firm's actions and decisions. One of these decisions involves the organization of production in terms of the number of layers of management the firm decides to employ. Using detailed employer-employee matched data and firm production quantity and input data for Portuguese firms, we study the endogenous response of revenue-based and quantity-based productivity to a change in layers: a firm reorganization. We show that as a result of an exogenous demand or productivity shock that makes the firm reorganize and add a management layer, quantity based productivity increases by about 4%, while revenue-based productivity drops by more than 4%. Such a reorganization makes the firm more productive, but also increases the quantity produced to an extent that lowers the price charged by the firm and, as a result, its revenue-based productivity.
    Keywords: productivity, organization, wages, managers, layers, TFP, firm size
    JEL: D22 D24 L23 F16 J24 J31
    Date: 2015–12
  5. By: Federico Biagi (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Martin Falk (Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO))
    Abstract: This report has three sections and a key feature of our empirical analysis is the use of several types of advanced ICT activities such as enterprise resource planning systems, mobile internet access and e-commerce practices. The first section presents new empirical evidence regarding the impact of ICT/E-commerce activities on industry performance in Europe measured as employment and labour productivity growth. The data consists of multi-country industry level data for 14 European countries for the period 2002-2010. The main result of this section is that the increase in ICT/e-commerce activities over time has not lead to a decline in jobs. This holds true for both manufacturing and service industries. In contrast, the different types of ICT activities are significantly related to labour productivity. However, the sign and significance of the relationships vary across different types of ICT activities and also vary over time with lower magnitude for the more recent period. The second section looks at the relationship between several indicators of ICT usage and digitalisation, and the relative demand for highly skilled workers. The data is based on two-digit industry data for seven European countries for the period 2002-2010. For manufacturing industries, our estimates show that broadband connected employees, diffusion of mobile internet, use of enterprise resource planning systems and electronic invoicing are all significantly positively related to the industries’ skill intensity. For service industries only mobile internet usage is significant. These estimates indicate that the increase in ERP systems during the period studied accounts for 25% of the increase in the share of workers with a tertiary degree across manufacturing industries and countries. The results are robust with respect to the estimation method and when accounting for endogeneity of ICT. The third section investigates the relationship between technological and organisational innovations, and ICT usage/e-commerce and internet technologies. The data is based on disaggregated data by firm size/industry for 12 European countries for the period 2002-2010. The empirical results show that the sales share of new market products is significantly positively related with both the percentage of workers with mobile internet access and e-procurement activities. Sharing electronic data also contributes to product innovations. We also find that organisational change and enterprise resource planning
    Keywords: Labour Demand, Technological Change, ICT, employment
    JEL: J23 J24 O33 L86
    Date: 2015
  6. By: Jan Tore Klovland (Norwegian School of Economics and Norges Bank)
    Abstract: This paper presents new indices for industrial production in Norway covering the years 1896-1948. Separate annual and monthly indices of gross output and labour productivity are computed for 45 manufacturing and mining industries, using annually updated weights based on value added at factor cost. The new industrial production index shows somewhat stronger growth of output in the years before WWI and, in particular, in the 1930s, than the existing index published by Statistics Norway. The new monthly data set also provides a basis for identifying a business cycle chronology for Norway in the first half of the twentieth century.
    Keywords: Industrial production, business cycles, labour productivity
    JEL: E32 N64 O47
    Date: 2015–12–08
  7. By: Giovanni Marin (IRCrES-CNR, Milano, Italy; SEEDS, Ferrara, Italy.); Claudia Pellegrin (CEMI-CDM-EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland.); Marianna Marino (Department of Strategy and Innovation, ICN Business School, Nancy/Metz; France and Bureau d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée (BETA), Université de Lorraine, France)
    Abstract: The European emission trading scheme (EU ETS) has introduced a price for carbon and has thus led to an additional cost for companies that are regulated by the scheme. There is a growing body of empirical literature that investigates the effects of the EU ETS on firm economic performance. However, the results found to date are mixed. The objective of this paper is to provide empirical evidence on the effect of the EU ETS on economic performance at the firm level. Differently from the previous literature, we test the effect of the EU ETS on a larger set of indicators of economic performance: value added, turnover, employment, investment, labour productivity, total factor productivity and markup. Moreover, we evaluate the extent to which the impact of the EU ETS differs depending on some observable features of firms. Our results, based on a large panel of European firms, provide a comprehensive picture of the economic impact of the EU ETS in its first and second phases of implementation. The evidence suggests that the EU ETS had a positive impact on the scale of treated firms, whereas it had a negative impact on scale-free aspects of economic performance.
    Keywords: European Emission Trading Scheme, economic performance, difference-in-differences, emission intensity, allowance trading, environmental patents
    JEL: Q52 Q58
    Date: 2015–12
  8. By: Jan Hagemejer (Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw; National Bank of Poland)
    Abstract: The new EU member states have been experiencing firm internationalization not only through inward foreign direct investment but also through exporting, importation of foreign technology in investment goods and increased use of imported intermediates. We argue that there are important productivity spillovers within the global value chains, i.e. FDI alone does not tell the whole story of the reallocation processes going on in the economies of the NMS. We augment the standard TFP spillover empirical model with modern measures of GVC participation. We show that increased foreign content of exports brings additional productivity gains on top of the ones attributed to exporting. Moreover, we show that in selected cases, participation in the GVC leads to a smaller productivity gap between foreign and domestic firms.
    Keywords: global value chains, productivity, New Member States, productivity spillovers
    JEL: L25 C67 F10 F23 O12
    Date: 2015
  9. By: Wang, Weimin; Adams, Patrick
    Abstract: This paper presents a growth accounting framework in which subsoil mineral and energy resources are recognized as natural capital input into the production process. It is the first study of its kind in Canada. Firstly, the income attributable to subsoil resources, or resource rent, is estimated as a surplus value after all extraction costs and normal returns on produced capital have been accounted for. The value of a resource reserve is then estimated as the present value of the future resource rents generated from the efficient extraction of the reserve. Lastly, with extraction as the observed service flows of natural capital, multifactor productivity (MFP) growth and the other sources of economic growth can be reassessed by updating the income shares of all inputs, and then, by estimating the contribution to growth coming from changes in the value of natural capital input. This framework is then applied to the Canadian oil and gas extraction sector.
    Keywords: Crude oil and natural gas, Economic accounts, Energy, Productivity accounts
    Date: 2015–12–14
  10. By: Stöver, Jana; Weche, John P.
    Abstract: We investigate the impact of environmental regulation on firm performance and Investment behavior. Exploiting the case of a German water withdrawal regulation that is managed on the state level, we analyze firms' reactions to an increase in the water tax using a regression-adjusted difference-in-differences approach. We analyze the individual firm's response to a change in environmental regulation, distinguishing between add-on and integrated environmental investments. This allows us to include intra-firm innovations into our analysis, which are likely to be of importance for increasing resource-efficiency. Our results show that the regulation in question shows no sign of affecting firms' overall competitiveness. The results imply that the predicted negative impact of the regulation on firms' economic Performance that was brought up before the introduction of the tax, does not seem to weigh heavily in this case. Nevertheless, when placed into a sustainable competitiveness context, the Regulation considered does not qualify as an appropriate policy tool for fostering green growth.
    Keywords: environmental regulation,DID,green growth,green investment,Porter hypoth- esis,sustainable competitiveness,water withdrawal regulation
    JEL: L60 O31 O32 Q58 Q55
    Date: 2015
  11. By: OKAZAKI Tetsuji; KORENAGA Takafumi
    Abstract: In the 1950s, the Japanese economy was faced with international competition, with old industrial equipment built before and during World War II. In this situation, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) launched the "Industrial Rationalization" policy, whose main purpose was updating the equipment of strategic industries such as iron and steel and electricity. In this paper, we investigated the change in the vintage distribution of the equipment in the iron and steel industry in the 1950s and its productivity implication, using equipment-level and plant-level data. It was found that, on average, vintages of the equipment became newer in this period, which raised the total factor productivity. Also, we estimated the average treatment effect of the Japan Development Bank (JDB) loan on the vintages and found that the JDB loan had a significant positive impact on the rejuvenation of the equipment.
    Date: 2015–12
  12. By: Cem Ertur (University of Orleans UMR 6221, CNRS Faculté de Droit d’Economie et de Gestion. Rue de Blois - B.P. 6739 45067 Orléans Cedex 2,France); Antonio Musolesi (Department of Economics and Management (DEM), University of Ferrara, and SEEDS, Via Voltapaletto 11, 44100 Ferrara - Italy.)
    Abstract: This paper provides an econometric examination of geographic R&D spillovers among countries by focusing on the issue of cross-sectional dependence, and in particular on the different ways – weak and strong – it may affect the model. A preliminary analysis based on the estimation of the exponent of cross-sectional correlation proposed by Bailey et al.(2013), a, provides a very clear-cut result with an estimate of a very close to unity, not only indicating the presence of strong cross-sectional correlation but also being consistent with the factor literature typically assuming that a = 1. Moreover, second generation unit roots tests suggest that while the unobserved idiosyncratic component of the variables under study may be stationary, the unobserved common factors appear to be nonstationary. Consequently, a factor structure appears to be preferable to a spatial error model and in particular the Correlated Common Effects approach is employed since, among other things, it is still valid in the more general case of nonstationary common factors. Finally, comparing the results with those obtained with a spatial model gives some insights on the possible bias occurring when allowing only for weak correlation while strong correlation is present in the data.
    Keywords: panel data; cross-sectional correlation; spatial models; factor models; unit root; international technology diffusion; geography.
    JEL: C23 C5 F0 O3
    Date: 2015–12

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