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Nicola Benatti

18 February 2014
Drawing from confidential firm-level balance sheets in 11 European countries, the paper presents a novel sectoral database of comparable productivity indicators built by members of the Competitiveness Research Network (CompNet) using a newly developed research infrastructure. Beyond aggregate information available from industry statistics of Eurostat or EU KLEMS, the paper provides information on the distribution of firms across several dimensions related to competitiveness, e.g. productivity and size. The database comprises so far 11 countries, with information for 58 sectors over the period 1995-2011. The paper documents the development of the new research infrastructure, describes the database, and shows some preliminary results. Among them, it shows that there is large heterogeneity in terms of firm productivity or size within narrowly defined industries in all countries. Productivity, and above all, size distribution are very skewed across countries, with a thick left-tail of low productive firms. Moreover, firms at both ends of the distribution show very different dynamics in terms of productivity and unit labour costs. Within-sector heterogeneity and productivity dispersion are positively correlated to aggregate productivity given the possibility of reallocating resources from less to more productive firms. To this extent, we show how allocative efficiency varies across countries, and more interestingly, over different periods of time. Finally, we apply the new database to illustrate the importance of productivity dispersion to explain aggregate trade results.
JEL Code
L11 : Industrial Organization→Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance→Production, Pricing, and Market Structure, Size Distribution of Firms
L25 : Industrial Organization→Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior→Firm Performance: Size, Diversification, and Scope
D24 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Production, Cost, Capital, Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity, Capacity
O4 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity
O57 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economywide Country Studies→Comparative Studies of Countries
Competitiveness Research Network
29 July 2020
Economic Bulletin Issue 5, 2020
This box examines high-frequency data to quantify the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on both job postings and hiring patterns in the euro area. Prior to the COVID-19 crisis, both of these indicators had increased steadily year on year, reflecting a rise in the number of job findings in the euro area. However, both the Indeed job postings and the LinkedIn hiring rate have declined significantly since the onset of the COVID-19 crisis and the lockdowns, with the hiring rate bottoming out in May 2020. While the decline in the hiring rate was broad-based across sectors, the intensity of the COVID-19 shock is asymmetric, with sectors such as recreation, travel and manufacturing being more affected by the crisis than others, such as healthcare, software and IT services sectors. Based on the high-frequency information derived from the hiring rate, the implied unemployment rate is expected to peak during the second quarter of 2020 and to be around 2.3 percentage points higher than in February. Overall, the methodology and the high-frequency data used in this box allow for a timely assessment of developments in the euro area labour market. The use of job flows in and out of unemployment helps to enhance our understanding of the labour market adjustment during the current COVID-19 crisis.
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
E27 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
6 January 2021
Economic Bulletin Issue 8, 2020
Can the indicator of negotiated wage rates play an especially important role in assessing and forecasting wage dynamics at the current juncture? While the data on negotiated wages are available on a more timely basis, negotiated wage growth tends to only react with some lag to changes in labour market conditions, owing to the nature of the negotiation process, and the indicator is currently still dominated by wage agreements agreed prior to the pandemic. The main effects of the pandemic on negotiated wage growth are likely to become visible only from 2021 – when a substantial share of wage contracts in euro area countries is due to be renegotiated. Wage drift developments, in conjunction with information on hours worked and unemployment, can provide some indications regarding the environment in which these negotiations will take place. The availability of more granular data, for example on negotiated wage growth in different sectors, would be very helpful in analysing euro area wage developments in more detail.
JEL Code
H24 : Public Economics→Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue→Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
J30 : Labor and Demographic Economics→Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs→General
J31 : Labor and Demographic Economics→Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs→Wage Level and Structure, Wage Differentials