nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2013‒07‒15
eighteen papers chosen by
Frederic S. Lee
University of Missouri-Kansas City

  1. How do worker cooperatives stabilize employment? The role of profit reinvestment into locked assets By Cecilia Navarra
  2. Do higher corporate taxes reduce wages? Micro evidence from Germany By Fuest, Clemens; Peichl, Andreas; Siegloch, Sebastian
  3. Georg von Charasoff´s Theory of Value, Capital and Prices of Production By Thomas Huth
  4. Technology Diffusion:Measurement, Causes and Consequences By Comin, Diego; Mestieri, Marti
  5. The dynamics of organizational structures and performances under diverging distributions of knowledge and different power structures By Giovanni Dosi; Luigi Marengo
  6. Competition policy agendas for industrializing countries By Budzinski, Oliver; Haji Ali Beigi, Maryam
  7. Produttività, salari, innovazione. Post-riflessioni: un patto per cosa e tra chi? By Paolo Pini
  8. Assessing the Regional Economic Impacts of Defense Activities – A Survey of Methods By Josselin Droff; Alfredo R. Paloyo
  9. The Connection Between ICT Development Level and The Use of Information Systems by Micro-Enterprises By Sasvari, Peter; Majoros, Zsuzsa
  10. Should competition policy in banking be amended during crises? Lessons from the EU By Hasan, Iftekhar; Marinc , Matej
  11. Civilizing capitalism: “good” and “bad” greed from the enlightenment to Thorstein Veblen (1857-1929) By Reinert, Erik S.
  12. Creating complex tables for publication By John Luke Gallup
  13. Labor mobility network and intra firm wage dispersion By Ambra Poggi
  14. On history and policy: Time in the age of neoliberalism By Boldizzoni, Francesco
  15. Breaking Up Is Hard To Do: Why Firms Fragment Production Across Locations By Teresa C. Fort
  16. Trust, Growth and Well-being: New Evidence and Policy Implications By Algan, Yann; Cahuc, Pierre
  17. Does the Acquisition of Asian Market Improve Corporate Profits? -Asian Market and R&D Investment in four Machine Apparatus Industries- By Toshiyuki Nakanishi
  18. Bite the Bullet: Trade Retaliation, EU Jurisprudence and the Law and Economics of ‘Taking One for the Team’ By Bernard M. Hoekman; Petros C. Mavroidis

  1. By: Cecilia Navarra (Center for Research in the Economics of Development, University of Namur)
    Abstract: A frequent characteristic of worker cooperatives is the tendency to reinvest a large share of profits into asset locks: a common fund, indivisible and not appropriable by members, neither upon quitting, nor at the end of the firms life. To explain this behaviour, I introduce the hypothesis that asset locks play a significant role in employment stabilization. This can be obtained in two ways: by letting wages fluctuate, or by accumulating reinvested profits into an income stabilizing fund that allows to face downturns without firing and without reducing wages. In this second case, asset locks play a wage smoothing role. I provide evidence for this function by means of original data at the firm level and by first-hand collected survey data at the individual level on risk perception in a sample of Italian cooperatives.
    Keywords: worker cooperatives, asset locks, employment stability, wage smoothing
    JEL: J54 P13
    Date: 2013–06
  2. By: Fuest, Clemens; Peichl, Andreas; Siegloch, Sebastian
    Abstract: Because of endogeneity problems very few studies have been able to identify the incidence of corporate taxes on wages. We circumvent these problems by using an 11-year panel of data on 11,441 German municipalities' tax rates, 8 percent of which change each year, linked to administrative matched employer-employee data. Consistent with our theoretical model, we find a negative effect of corporate taxation on wages: a 1 euro increase in tax liabilities yields a 77 cent decrease in the wage bill. The direct wage effect, arising in a collective bargaining context, dominates, while the conventional indirect wage effect through reduced investment is empirically small due to regional labor mobility. High and medium-skilled workers, who arguably extract higher rents in collective agreements, bear a larger share of the corporate tax burden. --
    Keywords: business tax,wage incidence,administrative data,local taxation
    JEL: H2 H7 J3
    Date: 2013
  3. By: Thomas Huth (Leuphana University Lueneburg, Germany)
    Abstract: The present paper on the now partly well known Russian mathematician and “amateur economist” v. Charasoff was originally written in 1987 together with H. Duffner three years after Charasoff’s remarkable contribution of 1910 “Das System des Marxismus” (The system of Marxism) had been rediscovered by the Italian economists Gilibert and Egidi. It was then the second mathematical formulation of Charasoff’s contribution on prominent but partly still unresolved topics in Marxian economics. However, though our paper circulated as mimeo it had not been published in a regular journal of economics. Meanwhile, several contributions on Charasoff appeared by such authors as Egidi, Gilibert, Kurz and Salvadori, Stamatis and Mori. But none of them seems to deal with Charasoff’s economics in an exhaustive manner. Therefore and nevertheless, the paper may be still of some interest to the, nowadays regrettably rather narrow, audience of economists specialized in linear models of production, Marxian economic theory and Neoricardianism.
    Keywords: Marxian economics, labor theory of value, transformation problem, prices of production
    JEL: B14 B51 C67 D24
    Date: 2013–06
  4. By: Comin, Diego; Mestieri, Marti
    Abstract: This chapter discusses dierent approaches pursued to explore three broad questions related to technology diusion: what general patterns characterize the diusion of technologies, and how have they changed over time; what are the key drivers of technology, and what are the macroeconomic consequences of technology. We prioritize in our dis- cussion unied approaches to these three questions that are based on direct measures of technology
    Date: 2013–05–08
  5. By: Giovanni Dosi; Luigi Marengo
    Abstract: In this work we analyze the characteristics and dynamics of organi- zations wherein members diverge in terms of capabilities and visions they hold, and interests which they pursue. How does society put together such distributed and possibly coflicting knowledge? The question is "Hayekian" in its emphasis on the distributed features of the latter. However, our analytical point of departure is quite "anti- Hayekian" in that it focuses on how organizations aggregate and put to use such knowledge by means of di®erent combinations among power of allocation of decisions and exercise of authority. Together, organizational power shapes the very preferences of organizational members. More specifically, we study the efficiency of different balances between the three foregoing mechanisms. In all that, organization for sure "aggregate" and make compatible different pieces of distributed knowledge, but the causation arrow goes also the other way round: organizations shape the characteristics and distribution of knowledge itself, and of the micro "visions" and judgements.
    Keywords: authority, power, distributed knowledge
    Date: 2013–07–08
  6. By: Budzinski, Oliver; Haji Ali Beigi, Maryam
    Abstract: [Introduction ...] In this chapter, we attempt to sketch a competition policy agenda for industrializing countries that meet or come close to meeting several typical characteristics. Section 2 outlines these characteristics and thus specifies the addressees of our paper. Thereafter, section 3 discusses fundamental principles of a competition policy agenda for industrializing countries, in particular a focus on a rule-based approach, the special role of guidance, fairness considerations and the spirit of competition as well as the need for setting priorities. Section 4 exemplifies more specifically what these principles imply for the actual competition policy agenda. --
    Date: 2013
  7. By: Paolo Pini
    Abstract: A Social pact among Producers is a chimera. Invoked by many to stop the decline of the Italian economy during the last two decades, it finds the main saboteurs in the national politics and in the promoters of the «expansionary austerity» in Europe. Economists put forward various proposals, and the social partners seem at least partly ready to a dialogue, but the possible scenarios do not envisage feasible solutions. Meanwhile, from 1990 to 2000 labour income share decreased by 10 percentage points, to recover less than 2 points in the following decade; productivity growth slowed down since the mid-90s to became almost zero since 2000; the gap between productivity and real wage increased in the 90s to slightly decline in the euro period, when stationary productivity and wages prevailed. A change in route is urgently needed, in Italy and in Europe, and investment in work and innovation, the only two factors that can bring us back on a growth path.
    Keywords: Productivity; Social Pact; Wages
    JEL: J33 J5 O47
    Date: 2013–06–22
  8. By: Josselin Droff; Alfredo R. Paloyo
    Abstract: Defense activities exercised in a specific region may alter the region’s economic performances. An accurate assessment of the potential economic impacts of defense activities within a specific area is therefore a valuable undertaking, especially for regional planners who may want to prepare for changes. The variety in the methodological landscape, counting, among others, input–output models, economic base models, Keynesian regional multipliers, fixed-effects estimators, and casestudy approaches inspired by geography, sociology, or political science may pose a dilemma. In this paper, we detail the historical and theoretical background of each method, as well as select exemplary cases where these methods were successfully or inappropriately applied. By examining old and “new” methods based on the extant literature in regional economics, we aim to construct a methodological typology that could be extremely valuable to all stakeholders.
    Keywords: Defense activities; public planning; regional impact methods
    JEL: O18 R11 R15
    Date: 2013–06
  9. By: Sasvari, Peter; Majoros, Zsuzsa
    Abstract: In the era of unstoppable IT development, the use of various information systems is an essential requirement for all enterprises. In particular, micro-enterprises are in a difficult position since they need continuous development to remain competitive with the possible help of information systems. At the same time, these enterprises that employ only a few people cannot afford to implement expensive software applications. Analysing the use of information systems among microenterprises is very important as they typically form the majority of enterprises, having a significant influence on the economic situation of each country. The present paper is aimed at analysing the use of information systems by micro-enterprises in Germany, Hungary and Slovakia. -- Использование информационных систем необходимо на любом предприятии. Однако небольшие предприятия (микропредприятия) часто не имеют достаточных ресурсов для внедрения информационных технологий в свою деятельность. В то же время они существенно влияют на экономическую ситуацию в каждой стране. В данной работе анализируются пути использования информационных систем на предприятиях Германии, Словакии и Венгрии.
    Keywords: ICT,Hungary,Slovakia,Germany,Business Information Systems,micro-enterprises
    JEL: M13 M15
    Date: 2013–05–21
  10. By: Hasan, Iftekhar (Fordham University and Bank of Finland); Marinc , Matej (University of Ljubljana and ACLE)
    Abstract: This article investigates the nexus of competition and stability in European banking. It analyzes the European legal framework for competition policy in banking and several cases that pertain to anti-cartel policy, merger policy, and state-aid control. It discusses whether and how competition policy should be amended in order to preserve the stability of the banking system during crises. The article argues for increased cooperation between prudential regulators and competition authorities, as well as an enhanced framework for bank regulation, supervision, and resolution that could mitigate the need to change competition policy in crisis times.
    Keywords: banking; competition policy; financial crisis
    JEL: G21 G28 K21 L40
    Date: 2013–05–19
  11. By: Reinert, Erik S.
    Abstract: "As we look over the country today we see two classes of people. The excessively rich and the abject poor, and between them is a gulf ever deepening, ever widening, and the ranks of the poor are continually being recruited from a third class, the well-to-do, which class is rapidly disappearing and being absorbed by the very poor." Milford Wriarson Howard (1862-1937), in The American Plutocracy, 1895. This paper argues for important similarities between today’s economic situation and the picture painted above by Milford Howard, a member of the US Senate at the time he wrote The American Plutocracy. This was the time, the 1880s and 1890s, when a combination of Manchester Liberalism – a logical extension of Ricardian economics – and Social Darwinism – promoted by the exceedingly influential UK philosopher Herbert Spencer – threatened completely to take over economic thought and policy on both sides of the Atlantic. At the same time, the latter half of the 19th century was marred by financial crises and social unrest. The national cycles of boom and bust were not as globally synchronized as they later became, but they were frequent both in Europe and in the United States. Activist reformer Ida Tarbell probably exaggerated when she recalled that in the US “the eighties dripped with blood”, but a growing gulf between a small and opulent group of bankers and industrialists produced social unrest and bloody labour struggles. The panic on May 5, 1893 triggered the worst financial crisis in the US until then.
    Keywords: Capitalism; economic history; Thorstein Veblen
    JEL: N00 P10
    Date: 2013
  12. By: John Luke Gallup (Portland State University)
    Abstract: Complex statistical tables often must be built up by parts from the results of multiple Stata commands. I show the capabilities of frmttable and outreg for creating complex tables, and even fully formatted statistical appendices, for Word and TeX documents. Precise formatting of these tables from within Stata has the same benefits as writing do-files for statistics commands. They are reproducible and reusable when the data change, saving the user time.
    Date: 2013–07–03
  13. By: Ambra Poggi
    Abstract: In the recent discussion on productivity and how to foster it, the role of wage dispersion as determinant of workers productivity attracted much attention. But, what are the determinant of wage dispersion? In this paper, we analyze a very specific determinant of wage dispersion: job-to-job labor mobility. We focus on a geographically limited labor market and we represent the firms operating in such context as a “labor mobility network”. The latter can be formally defined as a binary directed graph where vertices indicate firms and links represent transfers of workers between firms. Some firms will be connected to each others, others will be disconnected. Since the firm’s position in the network (more or less central and close to other firms) is strictly connected with opportunities of knowledge transfers and good quality matches, its position could also be associated to intra-firm wage dispersion. Using 1990-2001 Veneto (a region of Italy) matched firm-worker data, we empirically test the existence of this association. We find the central positions in the network structure are positively associated with intra-firm wage dispersion.
    Keywords: wage dispersion, labor mobility, network
    JEL: J31 J62 L14
    Date: 2013
  14. By: Boldizzoni, Francesco
    Abstract: It is often said that history matters, but these words are often little more than a hollow statement. In the aftermath of the Great Recession, the view that the economy is a mechanical toy that can be fixed using a few simple tools has continued to be held by economists and policy makers and echoed by the media. The paper addresses the origins of this unfortunate belief, inherent to neoliberalism, and what can be done to bring time back into public discourse. -- Es heißt, dass Geschichte wichtig sei, aber oft ist dies nicht mehr als eine Redensart. Ökonomen und Politiker halten mit Unterstützung der Medien auch nach der Großen Rezession an der Ansicht fest, dass die Wirtschaft ein mechanisches Spielzeug ist, das mit ein paar einfachen Werkzeugen repariert werden kann. In dem vorliegenden Papier betrachtet der Autor die Ursprünge dieses dem Neoliberalismus innewohnenden Irrglaubens und untersucht, wie geschichtlich-zeitliche Zusammenhänge zurück in den öffentlichen Diskurs gebracht werden können.
    Date: 2013
  15. By: Teresa C. Fort
    Abstract: This paper documents the relative importance of labor cost differences, distance to suppliers, and communication technology in a rm's domestic and foreign sourcing decisions. Using an original dataset of U.S. manufacturers' decisions to contract for manufacturing services, I show that domestic fragmentation: i) is far more prevalent than offshoring; ii) changes rms' opportunity cost to offshore; and iii) is facilitated by communication technology. In contrast, communication technology does not necessarily lead rms to offshore. Firms fragment production to access cheaper labor, and countries that offer signifcant labor cost savings tend not to have the technology infrastructure to support high-tech production.
    Keywords: fragmentation, offshoring, technology, contract manufacturing services
    JEL: F14 F23 L23
    Date: 2013–07
  16. By: Algan, Yann (Sciences Po, Paris); Cahuc, Pierre (Ecole Polytechnique, Paris)
    Abstract: This survey reviews the recent research on trust, institutions and growth. It discusses the various measures of trust and documents the substantial heterogeneity of trust across space and time. The conceptual mechanisms and the methods employed to identify the causal impact of trust on economic performance are reviewed. We document the mechanisms of interactions between trust and economic development in the realms of finance, innovation, the organization of firms, the labor market and the product market. The last part reviews recent progress to identify how institutions and policies can affect trust and well-being.
    Keywords: trust, growth, institutions, well-being
    JEL: O11 O43 Z13
    Date: 2013–06
  17. By: Toshiyuki Nakanishi (Graduate School of Economics, Kobe University)
    Date: 2013–07
  18. By: Bernard M. Hoekman; Petros C. Mavroidis
    Abstract: This paper discusses the Fedon case law of the European Court of Justice (ECJ), which involved a claim for compensation by Fedon (an Italian producer of eye glass cases) from the EU for the imposition of WTO-authorized retaliatory trade barriers by the United States following the failure by the EU to comply with an adverse ruling by the WTO regarding its import-regime for bananas. As a result of the EU non-compliance, European banana distributors and some bananas producers benefitted from WTO-illegal protection, at the expense of a set of EU exporters, including Fedon, that were hit by US countermeasures. By not complying with its international (WTO) obligations, the EU redistributed income across producers in different sectors as well as between suppliers and consumers of bananas. Fedon contested the non-compliance by the EU before the ECJ and sought compensation. This paper assesses the ECJ ruling against Fedon and argues that the ECJ got it wrong, both in terms of legal principle and as a matter of legal technicalities. An alternative approach is proposed that would better balance individual rights to property against the ‘general’ EU interest whether or not to comply with adverse WTO rulings.
    Keywords: Trade agreements, retaliation, dispute settlement, compensation, EU law, WTO
    JEL: F13 K41 K42
    Date: 2013–05

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