nep-eur New Economics Papers
on Microeconomic European Issues
Issue of 2016‒03‒06
25 papers chosen by
Giuseppe Marotta
Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia

  1. What determines demand for Telecommunications services? Evidence from the EU countries before and after liberalization By Agiakloglou, Christos; Polemis, Michael
  2. Moving to an earnings-related parental leave system – do heterogeneous effects on parents make some children worse off? By Katrin Huber
  3. What If Your Boss Is a Woman? Work Organization, Work-Life Balance and Gender Discrimination at the Workplace By Lucifora, Claudio; Vigani, Daria
  4. Making Disability Work? The Effect of Financial Incentives on Partially Disabled Workers By Pierre Koning; Jan-Maarten van Sonsbeek
  5. Mobile and more productive? Firm-level evidence on the productivity effects of mobile internet use By Bertschek, Irene; Niebel, Thomas
  6. Negative Home Equity and Household Mobility: Evidence from Administrative Data By Sander van Veldhuizen; Benedikt Vogt; Bart Voogt
  7. Deconstructing Theories of Overeducation in Europe: A Wage Decomposition Approach By McGuinness, Seamus; Pouliakas, Konstantinos
  8. Transfer taxes and household mobility: distortion on the housing or labour market By Christian A. L. Hilber; Teemu Lyytikainen
  9. Availability of business services and outward investment: Evidence from French firms By Görg, Holger; Jabbour, Liza
  10. Paternal unemployment during childhood: causal effects on youth worklessness and educational attainment By Steffen Mueller; Regina T. Riphahn; Caroline Schwientek
  11. Smart Specialization Strategies and Key Enabling Technologies. Regional evidence from European patent data. By Sandro Montresor; Francesco Quatraro
  12. What drives youth unemployment in Europe? By Iva Tomic
  13. Concentration on the few? R&D and innovation in German firms 2001 to 2013 By Rammer, Christian; Schubert, Torben
  14. Explaining regional economic performance: the role of competitiveness, specialization and capabilities By Fagerberg , Jan; Srholec , Martin
  15. Strategic capacity withholding through failures in the German-Austrian electricity market By Bergler, Julian; Heim, Sven; Hüschelrath, Kai
  16. The Legacy of the Crisis: The Spanish Labour Market in the Aftermath of the Great Recession By Marcel Jansen; Sergi Jiménez-Martín; Lucía Gorjón
  17. Health Capacity to Work at Older Ages: Evidence from Spain By Pilar García-Gómez; Sergi Jiménez-Martín; Judit Vall Castello
  18. Economic implications of further harmonisation of electronic communications regulation in the EU By Marcus, J. Scott; Gantumur, Tseveen
  19. Do higher corporate taxes reduce wages? Micro evidence from Germany By Fuest, Clemens; Peichl, Andreas; Siegloch, Sebastian
  20. Gender inequalities in pensions: Are determinants the same in the private and public sectors? By Carole Bonnet; Dominique Meurs; Benoît Rapoport
  22. Replacement migration from a labour market perspective : Germany's long-term potential labour force and immigration from non-EU member countries By Fuchs, Johann; Kubis, Alexander; Schneider, Lutz
  23. The Link between R&D, Innovation and Productivity: Are Micro Firms Different? By Baumann, Julian; Kritikos, Alexander S.
  25. MR. ROSSI, MR. HU AND POLITICS. THE ROLE OF IMMIGRATION IN SHAPING NATIVES’ VOTING BEHAVIOR By Guglielmo Barone; Alessio D’Ignazio; Guido de Blasio; Paolo Naticchioni

  1. By: Agiakloglou, Christos; Polemis, Michael
    Abstract: This paper aims to investigate the main determinants of Telecommunications demand for European countries (EU). For this reason, a panel data set is used consisting of 19 EU countries over the period 1991-2010 capturing the years before and after the liberalization process. The goal is to clarify whether any changes in the demand of Telecommunications, as expressed by volume traffic in local, mobile and international market segments, are attributed to regulatory process or to some other major drivers so that policy implications can be drawn, taking also into account the magnitude of the relevant price elasticities. It turns out that the regulatory process does not seem to have significant impact on demand for Telecommunications services for the first period of liberalization.
    Keywords: Telecommunications,Demand,Elasticities,Regulatory Process,Panel data
    JEL: L51 L1 L94 C2
    Date: 2015
  2. By: Katrin Huber
    Abstract: Can moving to an earnings-related parental leave system influence children’s wellbeing and are heterogeneous effects on parents carried over to the entire family, making special groups of children worse off than others? To answer this question, this study exploits a large and unanticipated parental leave reform in Germany as a natural experiment. By replacing a means-tested by an earnings-related system the reform affected different groups of families to a variable extent. I detect significant negative effects on the personality of newborns whose families are subject to a nonpositive change in the overall benefit amount compared to the pre-reform situation. 2-3-year-old children belonging to the reform’s winners, however, improve their basic life skills and language skills.
    Keywords: Children’s Well-Being, Parental Leave, Heterogeneous Effects
    JEL: J13 J18 J22
    Date: 2015–08
  3. By: Lucifora, Claudio (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore); Vigani, Daria (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate the association between female leadership, work organization practices and perceived gender discrimination within firms. Using data for 30 European countries for the period 1995-2010, we find that having a female "boss" is associated with lower overall gender discrimination at work. The female boss effect, however, differs across gender: it is associated with lower discrimination among female employees, but higher among male employees. We also investigate the underlying mechanisms that shape gender discrimination within firms. We find evidence of a "women helping women" pattern through spill-over effects which reduce discrimination among women, but increase discrimination among men, particularly in female-dominated jobs. A better balance between work and life, a supportive work environment and flexible working time, particularly for women in high-skilled jobs, are shown to be effective in reducing gender discrimination. The above findings are robust to a number of specification changes and different sub-populations in our sample. Further, similar results are found when more traditional measures of gender imbalance, such as wages or career prospects, are used. Finally, to account for potential endogeneity and selection, arising from the non-random distribution of females in higher-rank jobs, we jointly estimate the selection process and the discrimination equation, finding support for a causal interpretation of the results.
    Keywords: gender discrimination, female leadership, work organization
    JEL: J16 J70 J81
    Date: 2016–02
  4. By: Pierre Koning (VU University Amsterdam, Leiden University, the Netherlands); Jan-Maarten van Sonsbeek (VU University Amsterdam, the Netherlands)
    Abstract: This study provides insight in the responsiveness of disabled workers to financial incentives, using administrative individual data from the Netherlands from 2006 to 2013. We focus on workers receiving partial DI benefits and with substantial residual work capacities that can be exploited. After the first phase of benefit entitlement, workers that do not use their residual income capacity experience a large drop in benefit income. In effect, this implies a substantial increase in incentives to resume work. With entitlement periods in the first phase of DI benefits varying across individuals, we use a difference-in-difference approach to analyze the effects on the incidence of work, the wage earnings and full work resumption of disabled workers. Based on the effect estimate on work incidence, we infer a labor elasticity rate of 0.12. Elasticity estimates are highest among younger DI recipients, as well as individuals with mental impairments. The incentive change has only a limited impact on wage earnings of partially disabled workers and no significant impact on work resumption rates.
    Keywords: Disability Insurance, Work Incentives
    JEL: C52 H53
    Date: 2016–01–11
  5. By: Bertschek, Irene; Niebel, Thomas
    Abstract: Mobile internet access allows for flexibility with respect to working time and working place. We analyse whether employees' use of mobile internet access improves firms' labour productivity. Our data set contains 2143 German firms and refers to the year 2014, when high-speed mobile internet was still at a relatively early stage of diffusion within firms. The econometric analysis shows that firms' labour productivity significantly increases with the share of employees with mobile internet access. Our instrumental variables approach reveals that mobile internet use does cause higher labour productivity.
    Keywords: Mobile Internet,Labour Productivity,Firm-Level Data
    JEL: D22 L20 O33
    Date: 2015
  6. By: Sander van Veldhuizen; Benedikt Vogt; Bart Voogt
    Abstract: We investigate the impact of negative home equity on household mobility. We investigate the impact of negative home equity on household mobility. We employ a unique administrative data set, which contains annual mobility and a large set of homeownercharacteristics of more than two million Dutch households. We exploit the regional variation of the substantial and unanticipated housing market bust starting in 2008 until 2012 to identify the effect of negative home equity on mobility. We find that households falling into negative equity due to unanticipated declining house prices are 18 percent less likely to move compared to households maintaining positive home equity.
    JEL: D10 D14 H31
    Date: 2016–02
  7. By: McGuinness, Seamus (Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin); Pouliakas, Konstantinos (European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop))
    Abstract: This paper uses data from the Cedefop European Skills and Jobs (ESJ) survey, a new international dataset of adult workers in 28 EU countries, to decompose the wage penalty of overeducated workers. The ESJ survey allows for integration of a rich, previously unavailable, set of factors in the estimation of the effect of overeducation on earnings. Oaxaca decomposition techniques are employed to uncover the extent to which the overeducation wage penalty can be attributed to either (i) human capital attributes, (ii) job characteristics, (iii) information asymmetries, (iv) compensating job attributes or (v) skill needs of jobs. Differences in human capital and job‐skill requirements are important factors in explaining the wage premium. It is found that asymmetry of information accounts for a significant part of the overeducation wage penalty for tertiary education graduates, whereas job characteristics and low skill content of jobs explain most of the wage gap for medium‐qualified employees. Little evidence is found in favour of equilibrium theories of skills matching and compensating wage differentials. The paper thus highlights the need for customised policy responses (e.g. career guidance; policies to raise job quality) to tackle overeducation.
    Keywords: overeducation, skills, mismatch, wages, decomposition
    JEL: J24 J31 J70
    Date: 2016–02
  8. By: Christian A. L. Hilber; Teemu Lyytikainen
    Abstract: We estimate the effect of the UK Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) – a transfer tax on the purchase price of property or land – on different types of household mobility using micro data. Exploiting a discontinuity in the tax schedule, we isolate the impact of the tax from other determinants of mobility. We compare homeowners with self-assessed house values on either sides of a cut-off value where the tax rate jumps from 1 to 3 percent. We find that a higher SDLT has a strong negative impact on housing-related and short distance moves but does not adversely affect job-induced or long distance mobility. our results suggest that transfer taxes may mainly distort housing rather than labor markets.
    Keywords: transfer taxes; stamp duty; transaction costs; homeownership; household mobility
    JEL: D23 H21 H27 J61 R21 R31 R38
    Date: 2015–10
  9. By: Görg, Holger; Jabbour, Liza
    Abstract: This paper considers the link between the local availability of services and a firm's decision to become a multinational. This is a highly topical issue, given that many industrialised countries are increasingly becoming services economies and firms become increasingly more globalised. In an analysis of rich firm level data for France we find evidence that the availability of services in the home country indeed has a positive impact on firms' decisions to become multinationals. This is robust to endogeneity concerns. The result can be interpreted in a simple set up where the local availability of business services improves firm efficiency and, hence, allows firms to overcome sunk costs of investing abroad more easily.
    Keywords: Business Services,Foreign Direct Investment,Multinationals
    JEL: F23 R11
    Date: 2015
  10. By: Steffen Mueller; Regina T. Riphahn; Caroline Schwientek
    Abstract: Using long-running data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (1984-2012) we investigate the impact of paternal unemployment on child labor market and education outcomes. We first describe correlation patterns and then use sibling fixed effects and the Gottschalk (1996) method to identify the causal effects of paternal unemployment. We find different patterns for sons and daughters. Paternal unemployment does not seem to causally affect the outcomes of sons. In contrast, it increases both daughters' worklessness and educational attainment. We test the robustness of the results and explore potential explanations.
    Keywords: youth unemployment, educational attainment, intergenerational mobility, causal effect, Gottschalk method, sibling fixed effects
    JEL: J62 C21 C26
    Date: 2014–10
  11. By: Sandro Montresor; Francesco Quatraro
    Abstract: The paper investigates the drivers of Smart Specialisation Strategies (S3) with a focus on Key Enabling Technologies (KETs). We re-examine the interpretation of S3 as new regional technological advantages (RTAs) obtained through relatedness, by reconceptualising within it the original focus on General Purpose Technologies (GPTs) and by considering their inter-regional spillovers. Combing regional patent and economic data for a 30-year panel (1980-2010) of 26 European countries, we find that KETs positively impact on new RTAs, pointing to a novel “enabling” role for them. KETs also negatively moderate the RTAs-impact of cognitively proximate pre-existing technologies, suggesting that KETs could make relatedness less binding in pursuing S3. The net-impact of KETs is positive, pointing to a new case for plugging KETs in the S3 policy tool-box. Furthermore, KETs also display cross-regional spillovers in their RTAs-impact, leaving KETs “poor” regions with a possible back-up from closer KETs “rich” ones.
    Keywords: Smart Specialization Strategies, Key Enabling Technologies, Relatedness, Revealed Technological Advantages
    JEL: R11 R58 O31 O33
    Date: 2015–08
  12. By: Iva Tomic (The Institute of Economics, Zagreb)
    Abstract: This article explores the main determinants of youth unemployment rates in Europe in the period 2002-2014, by estimating panel data models on a unique dataset for 28 EU member countries. Taking into account heterogeneity among EU countries, models are also estimated on two different subsamples: high and low youth unemployment rate. The results suggest that for better understanding of the determinants of youth unemployment in Europe it is not only relevant to focus on traditional macroeconomic variables, but it is also important to consider different structural and institutional factors. Hence, main empirical results suggest that youth unemployment in the EU is more pronounced in countries with poor GDP growth, low share of construction and high public debt. Low share of temporary employment and high perceived corruption also matter. Less mobility due to homeownership, high remittances from abroad, low work intensity of other household members or less possibilities for young people to live outside parental homes are also meaningful, at least for EU countries with comparatively high youth unemployment rates. These results could be of high importance, especially when determining and evaluating different measures taken in order to mitigate (high) youth unemployment rates in Europe.
    Keywords: labour market, youth unemployment, panel data models, recession, Europe
    JEL: J21 J64 C23
    Date: 2016–01
  13. By: Rammer, Christian; Schubert, Torben
    Abstract: Innovation activities in the German enterprise sector showed two opposing trends over the past two decades: While total innovation expenditures grew substantially, the number of firms conducting innovation activities fell sharply. Innovation expenditures hence concentrate on fewer firms. In this paper we analyse the evolution of firms' innovation and R&D activities. Based on panel data from the German part of the Community Innovation Survey covering a 13 years period (2001 to 2013) we use continuous-time Markov-Chains to analyse the changing properties of the firms' choices to conduct R&D and non-R&D innovation activities. Our findings are threefold. As compared to the pre-crisis period 2001-2007 there is a considerable change in innovation and R&D behaviour of German firms from 2008 onwards with an increasing number of firms exiting R&D and innovation activities. Smaller firms are the main driver behind this process, particularly with regard to quitting non-R&D innovation activities. Although smaller firms were also less likely to move to higher levels of innovativeness and R&D engagement and more likely to fall back in the pre-crisis period, these trends have been more pronounced in the crisis and even in the post-crisis period. Both public innovation support and better financial capabilities can increase the rate chances to move to higher levels of innovativeness and reduce the chances to fall back.
    JEL: O31 C22
    Date: 2016
  14. By: Fagerberg , Jan (CIRCLE, University of Lund, IKE, University of Aalborg, TIK, University of Oslo); Srholec , Martin (CIRCLE, University of Lund, CERGE-EI, Charles University and Economics Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences)
    Abstract: This paper is concerned with the explanation of differences in regional economic performance. The first part of the paper presents an overview of how theoretical and applied work of relevance for the analysis of regional economic performance has evolved to its present stance. This leads to the identification of two central factors for regional economic performance, that is, capability building and specialization. There is ample evidence on the impact of these two factors on economic development at the national level, but lack of relevant data has until recently made it difficult to explore these relationships at the regional level. This paper uses data that has recently become available for European regions to delve further into the relationships between capability building, specialization and economic performance. The analysis shows that regional economic performance and capability building does indeed go hand in hand, while the evidence regarding the impact of specialization is more mixed. Finally, the implications of these findings for regional policy and future research are considered.
    Keywords: Capabilities; Specialization; Regions; Related Variety; Smart Specialization
    JEL: O30 O38
    Date: 2016–01–18
  15. By: Bergler, Julian; Heim, Sven; Hüschelrath, Kai
    Abstract: In electricity day-ahead markets organized as uniform price auction, a small reduction in supply in times of high demand can cause substantial increases in price. We use a unique data set of failures of generation capacity in the German-Austrian electricity market to investigate the relationship between electricity spot prices and generation failures. Differentiating between strategic and non-strategic failures, we find a positive impact of prices on non-usable marginal generation capacity for strategic failures only. Our empirical analysis therefore provides evidence for the existence of strategic capacity withholding through failures suggesting further monitoring efforts by public authorities to effectively reduce the likelihood of such abuses of a dominant position.
    Keywords: Antitrust Policy,Market Power,Auctions,Electricity,Withholding
    JEL: L94 L12 L41 K21
    Date: 2016
  16. By: Marcel Jansen; Sergi Jiménez-Martín; Lucía Gorjón
    Abstract: The analysis is divided in three parts. The first part of the report offers descriptive evidence on the legacy of the crisis. It documents the incidence of unemployment by age, education, gender and duration and offers a comparison between Spain and the rest of the countries of the OECD. The reported evidence indicates that long-term unemployment is more pervasive and entrenched than elsewhere in the OECD. Fourteen percent of the civilian labour force is unemployed for more than a year and out of this group almost seventy percent is unemployed for more than two years. Moreover, we document a strong concentration of the longest unemployment spells among disadvantaged groups such as workers from the construction sector, the low-educated and older workers above fifty. In the second part of the report, we proceed with a formal econometric analysis to determine the relative importance of workers’ characteristics and the duration of unemployment for the observed job finding probabilities between 2007 and 2015. Finally, in the last part of the report we use longitudinal Social Security data to study the cumulative effects of the crisis for selected groups of workers.
    Date: 2016–02
  17. By: Pilar García-Gómez; Sergi Jiménez-Martín; Judit Vall Castello
    Abstract: In a world with limited PAYGO financing possibilities this paper explores whether older Spanish individuals have the health capacity to work longer. For that purpose we use Milligan-Wise and Cutler-Meara Cutler-Meara- Richards-Shubik simulation methods. Our results suggest that Spanish workers have significant additional capacities to extend their working careers.
    Date: 2016–02
  18. By: Marcus, J. Scott; Gantumur, Tseveen
    Abstract: A European debate over measures ostensibly to fully achieve a single market for electronic communications across the EU was brought to a head by the European Commission’s 2013 proposed Telecoms Single Market (TSM) legislative package. The Commission apparently hoped to achieve a Single European Market for electronic communications solely by means of regulatory harmonisation. The Commission’s proposal can serve as the basis for important reflections on harmonisation at European level. Why do we seek regulatory harmonisation? How does harmonisation differ from uniformity? What benefits flow from centralisation, and what benefits from decentralisation? Is the European Union in fact a Union? To what extent do the Member States differ from one another in ways that are not readily altered in the near term? What economic consequences (beyond those already achieved by the current regulatory framework) might be expected from more extensive harmonisation of European electronic communication? What do these considerations tell us about the degree of harmonisation that is desirable, and the degree that is realistically achievable? The approach taken in this paper can help to clarify thinking as to costs and benefits of stronger harmonisation or centralisation of electronic communications regulation, but we do not claim that we have evaluated every regulatory possibility, nor that our assessment is definitive. It is a thought exercise that is meant to help clarify the bounds to what can be achieved solely by means of regulatory harmonisation.
    Date: 2015
  19. By: Fuest, Clemens; Peichl, Andreas; Siegloch, Sebastian
    Abstract: This paper estimates the incidence of corporate taxes on wages using a 20-year panel of German municipalities. Administrative linked employer-employee data allows estimating heterogeneous worker and firm effects. We set up a general theoretical framework showing that corporate taxes can have a negative effect on wages in various labor market models. Using an event study design, we test the predictions of the theory. Our results indicate that workers bear about 40% of the total tax burden. Empirically, we confirm the importance of both labor market institutions and profit shifting possibilities for the incidence of corporate taxes on wages.
    Keywords: business tax,wage incidence,administrative data,local taxation
    JEL: H2 H7 J3
    Date: 2016
  20. By: Carole Bonnet; Dominique Meurs; Benoît Rapoport
    Abstract: While the average gender gap in pensions is quite well documented, gender differences in the distribution of pensions have rarely been explored. We show in this paper that pension dispersion is very similar for men and women within the French pension system of a given sector (public or private). However, the determinants of these gender inequalities are not the same. Using a regression-based decomposition of the Gini coefficient, we find that pension dispersion is mainly due to dispersion of the reference wage. Gender differences are less marked among civil servants. For women, pension dispersion is also due to dispersion in contribution periods. We also decompose the Gini coefficient by source of income to measure the impact of institutional rules on the extent of pension inequality. Unexpectedly, we find that the impact of pension minima is limited, although slightly larger for civil servants than for private sector employees.
    Keywords: Pension, Private and Public sector, Gender gap, Gini coefficient, Decomposition.
    JEL: J14 J16 H55
    Date: 2016
  21. By: Francesco Devicienti (University of Torino and Collegio Carlo Alberto); Paolo Naticchioni (Roma Tre University and IZA); Andrea Ricci (ISFOL)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of workplace unionization and product market volatility on firms' propensity to use temporary employment. Using Italian firm level data, we show that unionization and volatility have a positive impact on the share of temporary contracts. However, as volatility increases the union effect becomes negative, suggesting that in a highly volatile economic environment unions may be concerned about the weakening of their bargaining power associated with an extensive use of temporary workers. Furthermore, these effects are at work only for the use of non-training temporary contracts, while training temporary contracts are not affected by unions, volatility and their interplay. We argue that this occurs because non-training temporary contracts can be used by firms as a buffer stock to cope with uncertainty and by unions to protect insiders, while training temporary contracts are more likely to be used as a screening device for future permanent positions.
    Keywords: unions, temporary workers, training, product demand volatility, firms
    Date: 2015
  22. By: Fuchs, Johann (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany]); Kubis, Alexander (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany]); Schneider, Lutz
    Abstract: "We quantify the development of the potential labour force in Germany from 2014 to 2050 and pose the question as to which extent migration will be able to offset the well-known negative demographic influence. The mean overall results of this long period of time show that while migration may slightly dampen the trend, it cannot fully compensate for it, depending on the development of domestic labour participation. Persistently high immigration numbers, however, will defer the demographic caused decline of the workforce for some years. In contrast, even high, if realistic, immigration flows will only slow down demographic ageing." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))
    JEL: F22 J11 J21 J22
    Date: 2016–02–10
  23. By: Baumann, Julian (DIW Berlin); Kritikos, Alexander S. (DIW Berlin)
    Abstract: We analyze the link between R&D, innovation, and productivity in MSMEs with a special focus on micro firms with fewer than 10 employees; usually constituting the majority of firms in industrialized economies. Using the German KfW SME panel, we examine to what extent micro firms are different from other firms in terms of innovativeness. We find that while firms engage in innovative activities with smaller probability, the smaller they are, for those firms that do make such investment, R&D intensity is larger the smaller firms are. For all MSMEs, the predicted R&D intensity is positively correlated with the probability of reporting innovation, with a larger effect size for product than for process innovations. Moreover, micro firms benefit in a comparable way from innovation processes as larger firms, as they are similarly able to increase their labor productivity. Overall, the link between R&D, innovation, and productivity in micro firms does not largely differ from their larger counterparts.
    Keywords: MSMEs, micro firms, small firms, R&D, innovation, productivity
    JEL: L25 L60 O31 O33
    Date: 2016–02
  24. By: Stefania Cosci (LUMSA University); Valentina Meliciani (University of Teramo); Valentina Sabato (LUMSA University)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of relationship lending on innovation (the probability to innovate and the intensity of innovation). Using a unique dataset providing detailed information on bank-firm relationships across European firms, we relate different proxies of relationship lending (soft information, long-lasting relationships, number of banks, share of the main bank) to innovation. We find a very strong and robust positive effect of ‘soft-information intensive’ relationships, a less robust positive effect of long-lasting relationships and a negative effect of credit concentration as measured by the number of banking relationships. We also find that ‘soft-information intensive’ relationships reduce credit rationing for innovative firms, while long-lasting relationships seem to favour innovation via other relational channels. These results raise some concern on the impact of screening processes based on automatic procedures, as those suggested by the Basel rules, on firms’ capability to finance innovative activities in Europe.
    Keywords: relationship lending; innovation; R&D; credit constraints; soft information
    JEL: G10 G21 G30 O30 O31
    Date: 2015–03
  25. By: Guglielmo Barone (Bank of Italy and RCEA); Alessio D’Ignazio (Bank of Italy); Guido de Blasio (Bank of Italy); Paolo Naticchioni (Roma Tre University and IZA)
    Abstract: Using Italian municipality-level data on national elections and IV estimation strategy, we find that immigration generates a sizable causal increase in votes for the centre-right coalition, which has a political platform less favorable to immigrants. Additional findings are: (i) the effect is heterogeneous across municipalities with different sizes; (ii) the gain in votes for the centreright coalition corresponds to a loss of votes for the centre and centre-left parties, a decrease in voter turnout, and a rise in protest votes; (iii) the relationship between immigration and electoral gains percolates to mayoral election at the municipality level; (iv) cultural diversity, competition in the labor market and for public services, and political competition are the most relevant channels at work.
    Keywords: Immigration, voting, political economy
    JEL: D72 P16 J61
    Date: 2015

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