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Claire Giordano

4 May 2015
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1789
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Abstract
Since the mid-2000s price-competitiveness indicators for some euro-area countries have been providing conflicting signals. Against a stability of the producer price (PPI)-based measure, the manufacturing unit labour cost (ULCM)-deflated indicator points to a major competitiveness loss in Italy; we argue that the discrepancy mostly reflects a divergence of ULCM and PPI trends in competitor countries. Owing to the fading representativeness of labour on overall costs, price-based indicators appear to be more appropriate than those based on ULCMs to assess external competitiveness. In Italy ULC-based indicators play a less relevant role relative to price-deflated measures in explaining exports; the opposite holds true for Germany and France, whereas in Spain exports are insensitive to prices. Non-price competitiveness proves important in explaining Italian, German and, in particular, Spanish exports. Imports react to price-competitiveness dynamics only in Italy; considering the participation in global value chains is useful to correctly identify import sensitivity to domestic and foreign demand.
JEL Code
F14 : International Economics→Trade→Empirical Studies of Trade
F62 : International Economics→Economic Impacts of Globalization→Macroeconomic Impacts
Network
Competitiveness Research Network
15 July 2015
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 163
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Abstract
This Compendium describes the contribution of CompNet to the improvement of the analytical framework and indicators of competitiveness. It does this by presenting a comprehensive database of novel competitiveness indicators. These are more than 80 novel indicators designed by CompNet members that capture macro, micro and cross-country dimensions, thus providing a comprehensive view of the competitive position of EU countries and their peers. A short description of each innovative indicator
JEL Code
F14 : International Economics→Trade→Empirical Studies of Trade
F41 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→Open Economy Macroeconomics
F60 : International Economics→Economic Impacts of Globalization→General
D24 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Production, Cost, Capital, Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity, Capacity
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
29 August 2016
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1950
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Abstract
We investigate the role of corruption in the business environment in explaining the efficiency of within-sector production factor allocation across firms in nine Central and Eastern European countries in the period 2003-2012. Using a conditional convergence model, we find evidence of a positive relationship between corruption growth and both labour and capital misallocation dynamics, once country framework conditions are controlled for: the link between corruption and input misallocation dynamics is larger the smaller the country, the lower the degree of political stability and of civil liberties, and the weaker the quality of its regulations. As input misallocation is one of the determinants of productivity growth, we further show that the relationship between changes in corruption and TFP growth is indeed negative. Our results hold when we tackle a possible omitted variable bias by instrumenting corruption with two instrumental variables (the percentage of women in Parliament and freedom of the press).
JEL Code
D24 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Production, Cost, Capital, Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity, Capacity
D73 : Microeconomics→Analysis of Collective Decision-Making→Bureaucracy, Administrative Processes in Public Organizations, Corruption
O47 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity→Measurement of Economic Growth, Aggregate Productivity, Cross-Country Output Convergence
Network
Competitiveness Research Network
18 November 2016
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1981
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Abstract
We analyse the evolution of capital and labour (mis)allocation across firms in five euro-area countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy and Spain) and eight main sectors of the economy during the period 2002-2012. Three key stylized facts emerge. First, in all countries with the exception of Germany, capital allocation has worsened over time whereas the efficiency of labour reallocation has not changed significantly. Second, the observed increase in capital misallocation has been particularly severe in services as opposed to industry. Third, misallocation of both labour and capital dropped in all countries in 2009 and again for some country-sectors in 2011-2012. We next take stock of the possible drivers of input misallocation dynamics in a standard panel regression framework. Controlling for demand conditions and for the initial level of misallocation, heightened uncertainty, restrictive bank credit standards and tight product and labour market regulation are found to have boosted input misallocation, whereas the Great Recession per se exerted a cleansing effect.
JEL Code
D24 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Production, Cost, Capital, Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity, Capacity
D61 : Microeconomics→Welfare Economics→Allocative Efficiency, Cost?Benefit Analysis
O47 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity→Measurement of Economic Growth, Aggregate Productivity, Cross-Country Output Convergence
Network
Competitiveness Research Network
7 November 2017
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2108
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Abstract
Building upon a Behavioural Equilibrium Exchange Rate (BEER) model, estimated at a quarterly frequency since 1999 on a broad sample of 57 countries, this paper assesses whether both the size and the persistence of real effective exchange rate misalignments from the levels implied by economic fundamentals are affected by the adoption of a single currency. While real misalignments are found to be smaller in the euro area than in its main trading partners, they are also more persistent, although the reactivity of real exchange rates to past misalignments increased, and therefore the persistence decreased, after the global financial crisis. In the absence of the nominal adjustment channel, an improvement in the quality of regulation and institutions is found to reduce the persistence of real exchange rate misalignments, plausibly by removing real rigidities.
JEL Code
E24 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Employment, Unemployment, Wages, Intergenerational Income Distribution, Aggregate Human Capital
E30 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→General
F00 : International Economics→General→General
29 October 2018
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 215
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Abstract
The article analyses recent developments in business investment for a large group of EU countries, using a broad set of analytical tools and data sources. We find that the assessment of whether or not investment is currently low varies across benchmarks and countries. At the euro area level and for most countries, the level of business investment is broadly in line with the level of overall activity. However rates of capital stock growth have slowed down since the crisis. The main cyclical determinants of investment developments in the euro area include foreign and domestic demand, uncertainty and financial conditions. Uncertainty seems to have played a negative role during the financial and sovereign debt crises; however, given its low levels more recently, it has not acted as a drag on business investment overall during the recovery. Credit constraints appear to have hindered investment during the twin crises, especially in stressed countries. Aside from cyclical developments, important secular factors – relating to demographics, the changing nature and location of production, and the business environment – have influenced investment. Another factor that may have amplified the decline in private investment, particularly in countries that were hit hardest by the sovereign debt crisis, is the low level of public investment. This is because when public investment enhances the productivity of the private sector, there may be positive spillovers from the former to the latter, including across countries. Finally, intra-sector capital misallocation, measured as the within-sector dispersion across firms in the marginal revenue product of capital, has been increasing in Europe since 2002, which may in turn have exerted a significant drag on total factor productivity dynamics, and hence on aggregate output growth.
JEL Code
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
D24 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Production, Cost, Capital, Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity, Capacity
D61 : Microeconomics→Welfare Economics→Allocative Efficiency, Cost?Benefit Analysis
19 June 2019
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 225
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Abstract
Firms are heterogeneous, even within narrowly defined sectors. This paper surveys the relevant theoretical and empirical literature on firm heterogeneity and external trade. By innovatively exploiting rich cross-country micro-aggregated data sourced from the ECB Competitiveness Research Network (CompNet), this study then investigates the main implications of firm heterogeneity for trade of EU countries, showing a set of stylised facts. On the one hand, exporting firms are larger, more productive and pay higher wages than non-exporting firms. Only these firms are able to bear export costs, related to various factors, such as tariff and non-tariff trade barriers, the quality of the legal system or access to finance. Hence, only few enterprises actually export, and the intensity of aggregate export concentration within few large firms varies across countries and sectors. On the other hand, opening to trade boosts individual firms’ productivity growth, via a number of channels, and also enhances allocative efficiency across firms, in turn increasing aggregate productivity growth. One of the main standard determinants of export growth, namely changes in the real effective exchange rate, impacts aggregate performance differently across countries and sectors, depending on sectoral composition and on firm characteristics within a given sector
JEL Code
F14 : International Economics→Trade→Empirical Studies of Trade
L25 : Industrial Organization→Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior→Firm Performance: Size, Diversification, and Scope