nep-tra New Economics Papers
on Transition Economics
Issue of 2022‒02‒21
seven papers chosen by
Maksym Obrizan
Kyiv School of Economics

  1. Defaulting Alone: The Geography of Sme Owner Numbers and Credit Risk in Hungary By Csaba Burger
  2. Who profits from windfalls in oil tax revenue? Inequality, protests, and the role of corruption By Alexeev, Michael; Zakharov, Nikita
  3. Differences of Nutrition in the Elderly Population with Type 2 Diabetes in Romania, Russia and Japan By Georgeta Stoica-Marcu
  4. Business cycles in the EU: A comprehensive comparison across methods By Mariarosaria Comunale; Dmitrij Celov
  5. Consequences of Inconvenient Information: Evidence from Sentencing Disparities By Michal Soltes
  6. A Proven Solution for Lebanon’s Economic Crisis: A Currency Board By Kandasamy, Ambika
  7. Post-Pandemic: The Working from Home Aspect By Robert Serbanescu

  1. By: Csaba Burger (Magyar Nemzeti Bank (Central Bank of Hungary))
    Abstract: The transition from the state ownership to market mechanisms in Hungary fundamentally altered the geography of domestic micro, small, and medium enterprises (SMEs). This study investigates the spatial and temporal evolution of owner numbers, using data on all Hungarian SMEs between 1991 and 2019 and across 175 regional districts. Then it explores the relationship between the number of owners and the probability of credit default by joining data from the Credit Registry (KHR) for the period between 2007 and 2019. The number of owners at an average SME sank from four in 1991 to two in 2019, with consistently higher averages in less populated regions. Meanwhile, SMEs with one owner only have up to twice as high credit default probability as SMEs with more owners over all geographies in all years. Therefore, regionally varying ownership structures mean regionally differing ownership and management practices and hence risk levels. These could be mitigated with targeted regional policy measures.
    Keywords: financial geography, ownership structures, credit risk, SMEs
    JEL: G21 G3 R3 R11 R1
    Date: 2022
  2. By: Alexeev, Michael; Zakharov, Nikita
    Abstract: We investigate the relationship between oil windfalls and income inequality using the subnational data of one of the resource-richest and most unequal countries in the world – Russia. While previous literature produced contradictory findings due to the use of an aggregate measure of oil rents mainly in cross-national settings, we focus exclusively on oil rents that accrue to the subnational governments across one country. Our estimation strategy takes advantage of the two specific features of Russian oil taxation: 1) the policy change when sharing oil extraction taxes with local budgets was discontinued; and 2) the oil tax formula being tied directly to the international oil prices making oil price shocks an exogenous measure of change in oil rents. When we look at the period with oil tax revenues shared with the regional governments, we find that oil windfalls had increased income inequality and benefited the wealthiest quintile of the population in regions with more intense rent-seeking. Further, positive price shocks combined with greater rent-seeking reduced the share of labor income but increased the income share from unidentified sources traditionally associated with corruption. These effects of oil windfalls disappeared after the Russian government discontinued oil tax revenue sharing with regional governments. Finally, we examine some political implications of rising inequality due to the appropriation of oil windfalls. We find a positive effect of rising inequality on the frequency of protests associated with grievances among the poor and disadvantaged social groups; this effect, however, exists only in relatively democratic regions.
    JEL: D63 D73 Q35 Q38 P48
    Date: 2022–01–25
  3. By: Georgeta Stoica-Marcu (Ovidius University from Constanta, Romania)
    Abstract: Romania, Russia and Japan are 3 countries where the differences in nutrition are not very large, but which shock us by the increased number of diabetics in the elderly population over 70 years, countries with a low birth rate and an elderly population in addition to diabetes type II suffers from hypertension, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, neurological disease and a lot of loneliness. Prevention and monitoring programs are deficient in Romania and Russia, but excel in Japan where the state has more responsibility for the elderly population, in a relatively short time, have led to new treatments and diets, which have come to prolong the life of the elderly diabetic, ignored by certain public health systems in certain countries with the lifestyle and the consequences of this lifestyle.
    Keywords: nutrition, diabetes, Yoshinori Ohsumi, and eating habits
    Date: 2021–06
  4. By: Mariarosaria Comunale (Bank of Lithuania); Dmitrij Celov (Vilnius University)
    Abstract: Recently, star variables and the post-crisis nature of cyclical fluctuations have attracted a great deal of interest. In this paper, we investigate different methods of assessing business cycles for the European Union in general and the euro area in particular. First, we conduct a Monte Carlo experiment using a broad spectrum of univariate trend-cycle decomposition methods. The simulation aims to examine the ability of the analyzed methods to find the observed simulated cycle with structural properties similar to actual macroeconomic data. For the simulation, we used the structural model’s parameters calibrated to the euro area’s real GDP and unemployment rate. The simulation outcomes indicate the sufficient composition of the suite of models consisting of popular HodrickPrescott, Christiano-Fitzgerald and structural trend-cycle-seasonal filters, then used for the real application. We find that: (i) there is a high level of model uncertainty in comparing the estimates; (ii) growth rate (acceleration) cycles have often the worst performances, but they could be useful as early-warning predictors of turning points in growth and business cycles; and (iii) the best-performing Monte Carlo approaches provide a reasonable combination as the suite of models. When swings last less time and/or are smaller, it is easier to pick a good alternative method to the suite to capture the business cycle for real GDP. Second, we estimate the business cycles for real GDP and unemployment data varying from 1995Q1 to 2020Q4 (GDP) or 2020Q3 (unemployment), ending up with 28 cycles per country. Our analysis also confirms that the business cycles of euro area members are quite synchronized with he aggregate euro area. Some major differences can be found, however, especially in the case of periphery and new member states, with the latter improving in terms of coherency after the global financial crisis. The German cycles are among the cyclical movements least synchronised with the aggregate euro area.
    Keywords: : business cycle, growth cycle, European Union, real GDP, unemployment rate, trend-cycle decomposition, synchronization
    JEL: C31 E27 E32
    Date: 2021–08–26
  5. By: Michal Soltes
    Abstract: Inconvenient information about the performance of public institutions may undermine public trust. In an experiment, I test how information about sentencing disparities among judges in the Czech Republic affects respondents’ perception of the judicial system. I find no effect on respondents’ declared institutional trust and willingness to rely on the formal judicial system. Instead, the information marginally increased respondents’ policy involvement: They became more likely to: (i) sign a petition that invites politicians to address the underlying issue, and (ii) consider fairness of the judicial system a more important policy issue. The increased interest in the petition was driven by mothers, who are arguably more sensitive to the particular treatment information in the presented case of a failure to pay alimony.
    Keywords: information disclosure; institutional trust; performance of public institutions; sentencing disparities;
    JEL: H11 H40 D02 D83 K40
    Date: 2022–01
  6. By: Kandasamy, Ambika (The Johns Hopkins Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise)
    Abstract: Lebanon is currently facing a financial crisis marked by rising inflation rates and a black-market exchange rate that is significantly diverging day-by-day from the official exchange rate. In this paper, the author dives into Lebanon’s financial history and what actions undertaken by the government since the civil war have led to this crisis. After a thorough examination of the current economy, the author compares Lebanon’s present day financial crisis to the one faced by Bulgaria in the 1990s and concludes that the implementation of a currency board is a viable solution for restoring the strength of the Lebanese pound and ushering in financial stability.
    Keywords: currency board; Lebanon; Bulgaria
    JEL: E51 G01
    Date: 2021–11–13
  7. By: Robert Serbanescu (Member, Romanian Forensic Association, Bucharest, Romania)
    Abstract: The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic which hit the world at the beginning of 2020 has forced humanity to implement many changes in a lot of domains. From the simple everyday grocery shop activities to the way one can perform his work for an employer. As a result, life as we know it suffered a series of transformations, both positive and negative. The current paperwork will analyze the consequences raised by the virus in the area represented by the workforce. By this line of approach, we will take into consideration the legal dispositions that had to be adopted and put into practice, the strategy implemented by both companies and institutions in order to protect the health of their employees, alongside the benefits and the negative results derived from these actions. It is certain that moving the work to an individual`s domain has offered him/her an extra amount of time, however the lack of social interaction has left scars on a psychological level. Since one cannot do all the tasks on his own, the work is usually split between team members, but a team cannot be a correct social construct unless social contact is present in real life.
    Keywords: post-pandemic, work from home, hollow teams, aftereffects, social skills
    Date: 2021–06

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