nep-sbm New Economics Papers
on Small Business Management
Issue of 2020‒02‒10
nineteen papers chosen by
João Carlos Correia Leitão
Universidade da Beira Interior

  1. Firming up the capital base of the Austrian business sector - Consolidating Austria’s business sector strengths and its social role in the face of new challenges By Dennis Dlugosch; Rauf Gönenç; Eun Jung Kim; Aleksandra Paciorek
  2. Debt, Innovation, and Growth By Thomas Geelen; Jakub Hajda; Erwan Morellec
  3. European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs): Collaboration in a RIS3 Context By Nida Kamil Ozbolat; Karel Herman Haegeman; Katerina Sereti
  4. The digital layer: How innovative firms relate on the web By Krüger, Miriam; Kinne, Jan; Lenz, David; Resch, Bernd
  5. Managing Open-Innovation between Competitors: A Project-Level Approach By Thuy Seran; Sea Matilda Bez
  6. The Italian Startup Act: Empirical evidence of policy effects By Francesco Biancalani; Dirk Czarnitzki; Massimo Riccaboni
  7. Capacité d'absorption des entreprises de l'open source : du modèle d'affaires à l'intention d'affaires By Khaireddine Mouakhar; Nordine Benkeltoum
  8. The lasting effects of innovation on firm profitability: Panel evidence from a transitional economy By Ngoc Mai, Anh; Vu Van, Huong; Bui Xuan, Bien
  9. Innovation and Self-Employment By Ciarli, Tommaso; Di Ubaldo, Mattia; Savona, Maria
  10. The Role of Nonemployers in Business Dynamism and Aggregate Productivity By Pedro Bento; Diego Restuccia
  12. The techno-economic segment analysis of the Earth observation ecosystem: The TES approach applied to the EO worldwide ecosystem By Katarzyna Pogorzelska; Riccardo Righi; Melisande Cardona; Montserrat Lopez-Cobo; Lukasz Ziemba; Miguel Vazquez-Prada Baillet; Sofia Samoili; Giuditta De Prato
  13. Does Import Competition Reduce Domestic Innovation? Evidence from the 'China Stock' and Firm-Level Data on Canadian Manufacturing By Myeongwan Kim
  14. Strategy for managing the competitive potential of small and medium-sized enterprises By Generalova, Svetlana (Генералова, Светлана)
  15. Public Service Innovation Networks (PSINs): Collaborating for Innovation and Value Creation By Benoît Desmarchelier; Faridah Djellal; Faïz Gallouj
  16. Determinants of investment in tangible and intangible fixed assets By Miguel García-Posada; Álvaro Menéndez; Maristela Mulino
  17. Structural and cyclical determinants of access to finance: Evidence from Egypt By Betz, Frank; Ravasan, Farshad R.; Weiss, Christoph T.
  18. R&D Spillovers in Canadian Industry: Results from a New Micro Database By Myeongwan Kim, John Lester
  19. Productivity and finance: the intangible assets channel - a firm level analysis By Lilas Demmou; Guido Franco; Irina Stefanescu

  1. By: Dennis Dlugosch; Rauf Gönenç; Eun Jung Kim; Aleksandra Paciorek
    Abstract: While small- and medium sized firms in Austria are generally more productive, export more, and engage more in higher technology activities than in comparable countries, they need to adapt better to the knowledge economy to maintain their relative performance levels. The capital structure of Austrian SMEs are biased towards debt-financing and stronger equity, growth and venture capital markets would provide them with further resources for their long-term knowledge based investments. Skills shortages, in particular in advanced digital technologies, should be overcome. As around one third of all SMEs are up for ownership transmissions, ensuring successful business transfers will be crucial for maintaining the broad-based entrepreneurial dynamism. Meeting these challenges would also help to lift constraints on upscaling that many SMEs face and would provide the fruitful soil for future innovative activities.This Working Paper relates to the 2019 OECD Economic Survey of Austria ( nomic-snapshot/)
    Keywords: allowance for corporate equity, capital structure of SMEs, debt-financing, ownership transmissions, skill shortages
    JEL: E22 G30 G32 G38 G21 J11 J21
    Date: 2020–02–03
  2. By: Thomas Geelen (Copenhagen Business School - Department of Finance; Danish Finance Institute); Jakub Hajda (University of Lausanne; Swiss Finance Institute); Erwan Morellec (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne; Swiss Finance Institute)
    Abstract: Recent empirical studies show that innovative firms heavily rely on debt financing. This paper investigates the relation between debt financing, innovation, and growth in a Schumpeterian growth model in which firms' dynamic R&D and financing choices are jointly and endogenously determined. The paper demonstrates that while debt hampers innovation by incumbents due to debt overhang, it also stimulates entry, thereby fostering innovation and growth at the aggregate level. The paper also shows that debt financing has large effects on firm entry, firm turnover, and industry structure and evolution. Lastly, it predicts substantial intra-industry variation in leverage and innovation, in line with the empirical evidence..
    Keywords: debt, innovation, industry dynamics, growth
    JEL: G32 O30
    Date: 2019–07
  3. By: Nida Kamil Ozbolat (European Commission - JRC); Karel Herman Haegeman (European Commission - JRC); Katerina Sereti (European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT))
    Abstract: Innovation in the European Union is called upon to increase competitiveness, to improve territorial cohesion, and also to address societal challenges. This challenge-driven innovation is also high on the global agenda, and calls for building sufficient critical mass by taking full advantage of synergies and complementarities between innovation initiatives, in particular between cohesion-based innovation and excellence-based innovation. This report investigates in particular the motivations, practices and opportunities for strengthening collaborations between EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities (EIT KICs) (focusing on excellence-based innovation) and the Managing Authorities of national and regional ESI Funds (focusing on cohesion-based innovation), within the context of Research and Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisation (RIS3). Closer collaboration between RIS3 actors and the EIT KICs’ actors across Europe seems natural, as both communities aim at building Europe-wide value chains, encompass similar sets of stakeholders, and tackle similar societal challenges through innovation. However collaboration does not seem to come naturally, given the limited practices to date. Detailed analysis of both conceptual and practical similarities and differences between both approaches and the related communities identifies arguments, opportunities and bottlenecks for increased collaboration. Different modes of collaboration are considered, as well as proposals to scale up current collaboration practices and unlock existing collaboration potential. The report aims to make an important practical contribution to optimising the efficiency of research and innovation spending, to combining the objectives of increased competitiveness and cohesion, and to better addressing the big challenges our society is facing on the eve of the launch of the new Multi-Financial Framework.
    Keywords: Smart Specialisation, RIS3, EIT, KICs, Cohesion Policy, Territorial Development, Collaboration, Innovation, Research Excellence, Synergies, ESIF, Horizon 2020, Horizon Europe, Stairway to Excellence, S2E
    Date: 2019–12
  4. By: Krüger, Miriam; Kinne, Jan; Lenz, David; Resch, Bernd
    Abstract: In this paper, we introduce the concept of a Digital Layer to empirically investigate inter-firm relations at any geographical scale of analysis. The Digital Layer is created from large-scale, structured web scraping of firm websites, their textual content and the hyperlinks among them. Using text-based machine learning models, we show that this Digital Layer can be used to derive meaningful characteristics for the over seven million firm-to-firm relations, which we analyze in this case study of 500,000 firms based in Germany. Among others, we explore three dimensions of relational proximity: (1) Cognitive proximity is measured by the similarity between firms' website texts. (2) Organizational proximity is measured by classifying the nature of the firms' relationships (business vs. non-business) using a text-based machine learning classification model. (3) Geographical proximity is calculated using the exact geographic location of the firms. Finally, we use these variables to explore the differences between innovative and non-innovative firms with regard to their location and relations within the Digital Layer. The firm-level innovation indicators in this study come from traditional sources (survey and patent data) and from a novel deep learning-based approach that harnesses firm website texts. We find that, after controlling for a range of firm-level characteristics, innovative firms compared to non-innovative firms maintain more numerous relationships and that their partners are more innovative than partners of non-innovative firms. Innovative firms are located in dense areas and still maintain relationships that are geographically farther away. Their partners share a common knowledge base and their relationships are business-focused. We conclude that the Digital Layer is a suitable and highly cost-efficient method to conduct large-scale analyses of firm networks that are not constrained to specific sectors, regions, or a particular geographical level of analysis. As such, our approach complements other relational datasets like patents or survey data nicely.
    Keywords: Web Mining,Innovation,Proximity,Network,Natural Language Processing
    JEL: O30 R10 C80
    Date: 2020
  5. By: Thuy Seran (MRM - Montpellier Research in Management - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - UM3 - Université Paul-Valéry - Montpellier 3 - UM2 - Université Montpellier 2 - Sciences et Techniques - UPVD - Université de Perpignan Via Domitia - Groupe Sup de Co Montpellier (GSCM) - Montpellier Business School - UM - Université de Montpellier); Sea Matilda Bez (MRM - Montpellier Research in Management - UM1 - Université Montpellier 1 - UM3 - Université Paul-Valéry - Montpellier 3 - UM2 - Université Montpellier 2 - Sciences et Techniques - UPVD - Université de Perpignan Via Domitia - Groupe Sup de Co Montpellier (GSCM) - Montpellier Business School - UM - Université de Montpellier, Labex Entreprendre - UM - Université de Montpellier)
    Abstract: Past research on Business-to-Business (B2B) Open innovation is mainly on firm decisions to open their boundaries to allow knowledge to flow in and out at the firm level. An emerging group of studies seeks to switch the unit of analysis from the firm level to the project level, stressing a deeper understanding of how knowledge is purposely managed. This paper contributes to this latter group by investigating how knowledge is purposely managed in one of the most "high-risk" B2B open-innovation projects: Open Innovation between competitors. Our analysis reveals that (1) knowledge flow is a dynamic process that can gradually involve additional stakeholders; (2) knowledge flow is not purposely managed only outside and inside external boundaries to create value through a project; it must also continue to be managed outside and inside internal boundaries to capture value from the project; and (3) there are two types of knowledge flow that enable middle managers to ensure that their business units capture value from Open Innovation projects (i.e., a shopping list that brings the new innovation from the project to the business unit and a wish list that influences the direction of the innovation toward a firm's business unit needs).
    Keywords: Open innovation,Knowledge flows,Coopetition,Managing Open Innovation,Middle Managers
    Date: 2019–12–13
  6. By: Francesco Biancalani; Dirk Czarnitzki; Massimo Riccaboni
    Abstract: Using a difference-in-difference approach this paper analyses the impact of the Italian Startup Act entered into force in December 2012. This law provides special benefits (e.g. tax incentives, public loan guarantees, tailor-made labor law, cuts to red tape and fees) for firms registered as “innovative startups” in Italy. This special legislation has been implemented by the Italian government to increase innovativeness of small and young enterprises by facilitating improved access to external capital and (high-skilled) labor. Consequently, our goal is to assess the impact of the policy on equity, debt and employment. Overall, we find that the Italian startup policy has met its primary objectives. The treated firms operating under this program show more capacity to collect equity and debt, and also achieve higher levels of employment than untreated, comparable firms.
    Keywords: start up, innovation policy, firm subsidies, small firms
    Date: 2020–01–17
  7. By: Khaireddine Mouakhar (Métis Lab EM Normandie - EM Normandie - École de Management de Normandie); Nordine Benkeltoum (Department of Chemistry - CAM - University of Cambridge [UK])
    Abstract: Absorptive capacity is a firm's ability to identify, assimilate, transform and exploit external knowledge for value creation. The information systems literature has shown its critical role to create competitive advantages. This research studies the relationship between external environment exposure and the ability to create value based on external information. It re-examines the foundations of absorptive capacity through the business model framework. This research analyses absorptive capacity of 71 firms operating in a weak appropriability sector (open source). Using a mixed methods research setting, it models how companies create and strategically maintain their absorptive capacity. The contribution of this article is twofold. First, it shows that firms that claim interacting the most with communities have a high probability to have a low absorptive capacity. Conversely, firms that pretend interacting the least with their environment have a high probability to have a high absorptive capacity. Secondly, this research argues that firm absorptive capacity is mainly explained by the intention that motivate environment interaction.
    Abstract: La capacité d'absorption est l'habilité à identifier des connaissances externes, les assimiler, les transformer et les exploiter à des fins de création de valeur. La littérature en systèmes d'informations a montré son caractère critique pour la création d'avantages concurrentiels. Cette recherche étudie la relation entre durée d'exposition à l'environnement et capacité des entreprises à créer de la valeur sur la base d'informations externes. Elle réinterroge les fondements de la capacité d'absorption en offrant une relecture via le concept de modèle d'affaires. Elle analyse cette capacité auprès d'entreprises évoluant dans un secteur à faible appropriabilité (l'open source). En s'appuyant sur un dispositif méthodologique mixte, elle offre une modélisation de la manière dont les entreprises créent et maintiennent stratégiquement leur capacité d'absorption. La contribution de cet article est double. Il montre d'abord que les entreprises qui prétendent interagir le plus avec leur environnement présentent une faible probabilité d'en exploiter les informations. À l'inverse, les entreprises qui affirment interagir le moins avec leur environnement ont une forte probabilité d'en exploiter les informations. Ensuite, la recherche soutient que la capacité d'exploitation des entreprises s'explique principalement par l'intention qui motive les échanges avec l'environnement.
    Keywords: modèle d'affaires,intention,méthode mixte,open source,Mot clés : Capacité d'absorption
    Date: 2020
  8. By: Ngoc Mai, Anh; Vu Van, Huong; Bui Xuan, Bien
    Abstract: This study is the first to study the lasting effects of innovation on firm profitability in Vietnam. Using a unique panel dataset for the period 2005-2015, our results show that innovators achieve higher profit in comparison with non-innovating firms. The positive effects of innovation on firm profitability are observed not only in the short term but also in the longer term. The benefits of innovation for firm profitability can be seen in higher export probability, better productivity, better access to formal credit, and the ability to secure government support, but only after innovation.
    Keywords: Innovation, firm profitability, and SMEs
    JEL: D2 D21
    Date: 2019
  9. By: Ciarli, Tommaso; Di Ubaldo, Mattia; Savona, Maria
    Abstract: The paper adds to the literature on innovation and employment by looking at the relationship between R&D investments and the rise of alternative work arrangements, particularly selfemployment (SE). A literature review on the determinants of the emergence of non-standard work, alternative work arrangements and self-employment if offered first. The contributions that have looked at SE in relation to innovation strategies is surprisingly limited. General trends of SE in Europe are considered. The empirical contribution is focused on the analysis of local labour markets in the UK (Travel-To-Work-Areas, TTWAs), where their initial concentration of routinized and non-routinized jobs is considered. The probability that an individual shifts from paid employment to either unemployment or self-employment over the period 2001-13, as linked to changes in R&D investments in the TTWA is empirically accounted for. Results show that overall R&D has negligible effects on the probability of workers to become self-employed. R&D increases the probability of moving from unemployment to paid employment, especially in routinized areas, and reduces the permeability between routinised and nonroutinised workers. Also, a non-negligible increase in the probability that a routinized worker becomes SE as a result of R&D increase is found in low routinised local labour markets, but not in highly routinised areas. The paper sheds new lights on the effect of R&D on employment and self-employment in areas with different degrees of routinization, and adds to the discussion on the more general raise of alternative work arrangements in Europe by disentangling the characteristics of self-employment as resulting from R&D investments.
    Keywords: R&D,employment,unemployment,self-employment,routinized local labour markets
    JEL: J6 O3 O32
    Date: 2020
  10. By: Pedro Bento; Diego Restuccia
    Abstract: A decline in the net entry rate of employer firms in the United States in the last decades, a decline in business dynamism, may explain the observed productivity slowdown. We consider the role of nonemployers, businesses without paid employees, in business dynamism and aggregate productivity. Despite the decline in the growth of employer firms, the total number of firms has increased since the early 1980s, which in the context of a standard model of firm dynamics implies an average annual growth of aggregate productivity of 0.26-0.39\%, over one quarter of the productivity growth in the data.
    Keywords: nonemployers, employer firms, business dynamism, productivity, TFP.
    JEL: O4 O51 E1
    Date: 2020–01–31
  11. By: Alimudin, Arasy; Sasono, Agus Dwi
    Abstract: The development of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) plays an important role in improving the economy of Indonesia. According to the study the Central Bureau of Statistics, demographic trends will increase Indonesia. This could be a threat and an opportunity. Demographic trends threat when the increase is only being targeted overseas businessmen. An opportunity when the Indonesian people were able to take this opportunity and vying to become an entrepreneur. SMEs, which independent small and medium sized enterprises constitute the most appropriate form of business for the nation of Indonesia. The great potential of MSMEs implementation is hampered by the inability of businesses in obtaining capital, which is one of the reasons, is the inability of MSMEs in presenting the financial statements. This is due to limited human resource capacity SMEs in understanding and preparing financial accounting statements according to standards known to be difficult for small and medium businesses. To solve these problems, then there needs to be a financial information system for SMEs applied for is user friendly, easy to use and is based on financial standards more easily and d = simple, the Financial Accounting Standards for Entities without Public Accountability (SAK ETAP). This paper discusses Reporting Model, functional design and interface design for a system of financial information of SMEs on the basis of SAK-ETAP.
    Date: 2017–11–21
  12. By: Katarzyna Pogorzelska (European Commission - JRC); Riccardo Righi (European Commission - JRC); Melisande Cardona (European Commission - JRC); Montserrat Lopez-Cobo (European Commission - JRC); Lukasz Ziemba (European Commission - JRC); Miguel Vazquez-Prada Baillet (European Commission - JRC); Sofia Samoili (European Commission - JRC); Giuditta De Prato (European Commission - JRC)
    Abstract: This report analyses the worldwide landscape of the Earth observation ecosystem to identify opportunities, synergies, and obstacles that need to be addressed to foster the development of a vibrant space data economy in Europe. The report uses the Techno-Economic Segment (TES) analytical approach to provide a holistic view of the EO and geospatial ecosystem in Europe and worldwide through the identification of players and key clusters of activities. It also takes into consideration the potential flows of knowledge resulting from shared activities, locations and technological fields. The approach adopts a micro-based perspective considering a wide range of both horizontal and segment specific data sources. The outcome is a compelling characterisation of the key features of this very dynamic ecosystem. The TES EO ecosystem shows a very diverse global landscape with three distinguished global hubs, namely EU28, China and the US, as possible incubators for EO-linked innovation. Those hubs have the largest number of players in case of R&D and well as in case of industry. Nevertheless, the distribution of EO activities and concentration of those activities look quite different in the three leading macro areas. As far as the R&D activities are considered, the EU28 has the highest overall number of players involved in the all types of R&D activities, but scores quite low if only the patents are taken into account. Out of the three big players, the US has the smallest number of players involved in the overall EO R&D and stable position in number of patenting. In case of China, the largest number of R&D activities is concentrated in hands of relatively few players. In conclusion, the findings of this report confirm a general expectation about the growth in the EO downstream segment. However, up to 2017 the growth has not been staggering. Since 2017, there have been continuous policy efforts to increase the uptake of EO data in order to enable market growth.
    Keywords: EO value, geospatial market, Copernicus, TES, Earth observation
    Date: 2019–12
  13. By: Myeongwan Kim
    Abstract: A key economic issue in Canada is the declining Business Enterprise Research and Development in manufacturing since the early 2000s. Accompanying this, the total factor productivity (TFP) growth in manufacturing slowed after 2000. However, there has not been a definitive explanation for these trends. To deepen our understanding of this phenomenon, we focus on the increasing Chinese import share in the total domestic absorption in Canadian manufacturing since the early 2000s, which appears to be driven by positive supply shocks within Chinese manufacturing. Based on a firm-level database covering all incorporated firms in Canadian manufacturing, we find that rising Chinese import competition led to declines in R&D expenditure and TFP growth within firms but reallocated employment towards more productive firms and induced less productive firms to exit. The negative within-effects were pronounced for firms that were initially smaller, less profitable, and less productive. These firms also experienced declines in their profit margins due to rising Chinese import competition while larger and better-performing firms did not. Our estimates imply that rising Chinese import competition can explain about 7 per cent of the total decline of $1.36 billion (2007 CAD) in R&D expenditure in Canadian manufacturing between 2005 and 2010. Although it led to declines in TFP within firms, the positive reallocation effects more than offset the negative within-effect. Had there been no increase in Chinese import competition between 2005 and 2010, TFP in Canadian manufacturing would have declined by 1.26 per cent per year instead of the actual 1.09 per cent per year over this period.
    Keywords: China Shock, Canada, Imports, Productivity, Innovation
    JEL: F62 O32 O51 O53 L60
    Date: 2019–08
  14. By: Generalova, Svetlana (Генералова, Светлана) (The Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration)
    Abstract: The article discusses the concept of the competitive potential of small and medium enterprises. From the point of view of the system approach the structure of potential is described. The essence of the strategy of managing the competitive potential of small and medium-sized businesses is revealed. The role of state support in the formation of the potential of competitiveness of small and medium-sized businesses is shown. The application of the method of “smart” benchmarking in the system of strategic management of the competitive potential of enterprises has been proposed.
    Keywords: strategy, competitive potential, small and medium enterprises, state support of entrepreneurship, benchmarking
    Date: 2019–10
  15. By: Benoît Desmarchelier (CLERSE - Centre Lillois d’Études et de Recherches Sociologiques et Économiques - UMR 8019 - Université de Lille - ULCO - Université du Littoral Côte d'Opale - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Faridah Djellal (CLERSE - Centre Lillois d’Études et de Recherches Sociologiques et Économiques - UMR 8019 - Université de Lille - ULCO - Université du Littoral Côte d'Opale - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Faïz Gallouj (CLERSE - Centre Lillois d’Études et de Recherches Sociologiques et Économiques - UMR 8019 - Université de Lille - ULCO - Université du Littoral Côte d'Opale - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This deliverable is given over to "Public Service Innovation Networks" (PSINs). It seeks to define and characterize PSINs, from a structural point of view (sectors, actors, interaction, innovation) and a dynamic point of view (emergence, functioning, life cycle, performance) and to understand what distinguishes them from other types of innovation networks.
    Date: 2019–10–14
  16. By: Miguel García-Posada (Banco de España); Álvaro Menéndez (Banco de España); Maristela Mulino (Banco de España)
    Abstract: We investigate which firm characteristics are associated with investment in tangible and intangible fixed assets, paying special attention to the case of R&D, and which funding sources are used for each type of investment. Regarding firm characteristics, we find that younger and more profitable firms tend to invest more in all asset types. In the case of size, larger firms invest more in R&D and intangibles but less in tangible fixed assets. In addition, there is a concave relationship between leverage and investment. Regarding funding sources, we find that cash flow is the most important source of funding for intangibles and R&D, whereas financial debt is the most important funding source for tangible fixed assets. Stock issues are used to fund R&D and, especially, tangible fixed assets. Firms use cash holdings to smooth investment in R&D.
    Keywords: investment, tangible fixed assets, R&D, intangibles
    JEL: G31 G32 O32
    Date: 2020–02
  17. By: Betz, Frank; Ravasan, Farshad R.; Weiss, Christoph T.
    Abstract: Using panel data on Egyptian firms to explore cyclical and structural determinants of access to finance, we find that firms with more educated and more experienced managers are more likely to open a checking account, often a prerequisite for obtaining credit. Firms that started operating in the informal sector before registering are less likely to engage with the banking system. Exploiting data on the location of firms and bank branches, we also show that firms located in areas with a greater presence of banks that invest more in government debt are more likely to be credit constrained due to crowding out of the private sector.
    Keywords: financial constraints,crowding out,managerial skills
    JEL: G21 O15 O17
    Date: 2019
  18. By: Myeongwan Kim, John Lester
    Abstract: Business investment in research and development (R&D) makes a key contribution to rising living standards. Firms undertaking the R&D can reduce production costs and introduce new products that provide benefits to consumers that are not fully captured in selling prices. Further, it is very difficult for R&D-performing firms to prevent some of the knowledge created from leaking out or spilling over to other firms. Since firms do not take these positive spillover benefits into consideration when making investment decisions, most governments subsidize business investment in R&D with the expectation that economic performance will improve as a result. Our study confirms the existence of substantial spillover benefits from R&D performed in Canada, so government support for R&D is justified. However, we do not find any empirical evidence to support the current policy of subsidizing R&D at a higher rate when it is performed by small firms than when it is performed by large firms. We also find much lower private rate of return on R&D performed by small firms than by large firms. Subsidies appear to be playing a key role in this result
    JEL: O32 D22 D24
    Date: 2019–08
  19. By: Lilas Demmou; Guido Franco; Irina Stefanescu
    Abstract: Using a cross-country firm level panel dataset from 1995 to 2015, this paper revisits the finance–productivity nexus by looking at the role of intangible assets. It argues that due to their specific characteristics, such as valuation uncertainty and lower pledgeability, financing the purchase of intangible assets is more difficult than that of tangible assets. As a result, financial frictions are expected to be more binding for productivity growth in sectors where intangibles have become a pivotal component in firms production function. The analysis relies on a panel fixed effects econometric approach, several indices to capture financial frictions at the firm level and a new measure of intangible intensity at the industry level. We provide evidence that financial frictions act as a drag on productivity growth and especially so with respect to firms operating in intangible intensive sectors. These findings, which are robust to alternative specifications, shed light on the role of financial factors in explaining the productivity slowdown in OECD countries and provide support for using intangible intensity as a new dimension to proxy the relative exposure of industries to financing frictions.
    Keywords: financial constraints, intangible assets, productivity
    JEL: D22 D24 G31 O33
    Date: 2020–02–03

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