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Acta Oeconomica
Authors: Marija Petrović-Ranđelović, Tamara Rađenović, Bojan Krstić, and Vladimir Mićić

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the importance of human capital, as location determinant for the foreign direct investment (FDI) decisions in the Western Balkan Countries between 2008 and 2016. Apart from the human capital indicators, several location determinants were used as control variables. The hypothesis has been tested by employing correlation and regression analysis. The empirical findings revealed the positive impact of primary education and the negative impact of tertiary education on the inflows. The analysis showed that political stability and control of corruption are more important location determinants than human capital. Therefore, the policy measures should be directed towards the improvement of institutional framework and creating a supporting environment for the FDI inflows.

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Abstract

This study investigates the transmission mechanism of price and volatility spillovers across the Budapest, Warsaw, Prague, Bucharest, and Zagreb stock markets in the pre- and post-financial crisis periods under the framework of the multivariate Exponential Generalized Autoregressive Conditional Heteroskedasticity (EGARCH) model. By using daily closing prices, the results highlight certain interesting findings. I found evidence of price spillovers of the intraregional linkages among the stock price movements in five countries. This analysis shows the existence of bi-directional volatility spillovers between stock markets of the Czech Republic and Croatia in the pre-crisis period, and between Hungary and Romania in the post-crisis period. Also, there are significant volatility spillovers from Croatia to Poland and from Poland to the Czech Republic during two periods. The volatility is found to respond asymmetrically to innovations in other markets. The findings also indicate that the stock markets are more substantially integrated into crisis, as well as the persistence of volatility spillovers between the stock markets increases, and the financial stock markets become more integrated after the crisis period.

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Abstract

We investigate the relationship between economic growth and real exchange rate (RER) misalignments within the European Union (EU) during the period of 1995–2016. In addition to the relative price level of GDP, we quantify an alternative indicator for the RER: the internal relative price of services to goods. We interpret RER misalignments as deviations from the levels consistent with the levels of economic development among the EU countries. Using pooled OLS and dynamic panel techniques, we find that within the EU over- (under-) valuations are associated with lower (higher) growth. This is mainly due to developments in the countries operating under the fixed exchange rate regimes. Our results indicate that the level of development does not influence the strength of the growth-misalignment relationship within the EU. Regarding the price level of GDP, we find that the positive relationship between undervaluation and growth diminishes with the degree of undervaluation. We find that overvaluation has a statistically significant negative effect on export market shares and private investments, indicating that both the competitiveness and the investment channels play a role in the relationship between growth and RER misalignments. As an extension, we show that the effects of “wage misalignments” from levels consistent with productivity are also negatively related to economic growth. The policy implications of the analysis point to the importance of a growth strategy avoiding overvaluation on the one hand, and to the futility of aiming at excessive undervaluation, on the other.

Open access

Abstract

In our paper we use an institutional perspective to define the concept of the quality of remuneration policy. Traditional perspective focuses on pay-per-performance relationship between top executives' remuneration and companies' performance. This study is based on the assumption that the acquisition of normatively defined compensation practices and structures is more important for the successful organization than the practices which enhance efficiency defined on the basis of input (compensation) – output (company's performance) relationship. We examine the relationship between the quality of executive remuneration policy and corporate governance standards in banks with a controlling blockholder. Based on the sample of a hand-collected data on corporate governance characteristics, executive remuneration, and financial results of all public banks in Poland from 2005 to 2015, we find that the effective implementation of sound corporate governance practices should be rooted in the form of obligatory normative acts. Consistent with other studies we find a positive and statistically significant relationship between the corporate governance measures and the quality of remuneration policy. In particular, our study shows the significant role of two institutional factors positively determining the efficiency of incentive contracts: remuneration committees and institutional ownership. We also find that the banks controlled by foreign corporations, especially the US–UK–Ireland financial institutions, have a significantly more effective compensation policy than the banks controlled by domestic investors.

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Acta Oeconomica
Authors: Ivan Vujačić, Jelica Petrović-Vujačić, Svetozar Tanasković, and Marko Miljković

Abstract

After the devastation of the Second World War, the federal units of the former Yugoslavia were on their way to catching up with the Western Europe, with different degrees of success. In fact, Yugoslavia was considered a success story among the socialist economies due to its specific self-management system. Nevertheless, among the Federal units that later became independent states, regional differences in development level increased, in spite of the proclaimed policy to narrow them. Enough time has passed since the wars of the breakup and the economic transition to check if this divergence is continuing under a capitalist market system, now that all the countries are on the path to the European Union (EU) accession. The paper tests the convergence hypothesis among the states of the former Yugoslavia in terms of Human Development Index (HDI), as a more complex indicator of country development than GDP per capita. The results of two different approaches to test for the presence of β (beta) and σ (sigma) convergence suggest that the gap between the states of former Yugoslavia is closing, albeit at a slow rate. Given that convergence is slow, the active EU policies aimed at hastening the accession of the currently non-member states of the former Yugoslavia would accelerate the process.

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Abstract

Are governments able to continuously boost economic growth by spending for decades? Can the state be a more efficient user of income by improving the structure of public spending? The paper analyses the correlation between various types of public expenditures and GDP growth in different countries of the EU. The database was composed from the Classification of the Functions of Government (COFOG) classification of public spending, which contains data of 25 EU economies in the period 1996–2017. Three econometric models were applied in accordance with the empirical practice found in the literature: first-differences general method of moment (GMM), fixed effects panel and ordinary least squares (OLS) models. The expenditures on social protection proved to have a negative, statistically significant and robust impact on GDP growth. The results are similar for general public spending, and while spending on public order also has a significant and robust coefficient, its sign is ambiguous. The novelty of the article relate to the findings on lagged education and health spending, which have a positive impact on GDP growth.

Open access

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to study the impact of fiscal policy on economic growth in Bulgaria for the period 1995–2018. The descriptive analysis is focused on the general trends in fiscal policy and tax structure. The influence of government spending and taxation on economic growth is studied through regressions on time-series data. The empirical estimates prove that taxation is a more reliable instrument of fiscal policy than government spending in terms of a small open emerging-market economy. The dilution of the effect of public spending is probably caused by the high negative values of the current account balance that have been maintained for long periods. Thus, when domestic supply is weak, government expenditure cannot stimulate domestic production, as supply is dominated by import goods. Public investments demonstrate a negative effect on economic growth, which suggests a low productivity of investment spending. A factor of great importance is the level of corruption, which is strongly correlated with government investments, but is harmful to their efficiency. The Bulgarian tax system demonstrates consistency with economic growth. The receipts from value-added tax seems growth-conductive. The decrease of the corporate income tax rate exerts a positive impact on economc performance during the analyzed period, while personal income taxation demonstrates a negative effect. Property taxation has no significant relation with the growth of the Bulgarian economy.

Open access

Abstract

The growth impact of tax reforms is probably one of the most controversial issues in economic policy discussions, reflecting deep beliefs in the way economic agents are expected to react to policy changes. The optimal tax theory literature provides a wide array of arguments to identify the mechanisms through which tax reforms might influence growth, depending on the tax category considered and the circumstances under which tax reforms are implemented. The empirical literature has relied on the use of cross-country growth regressions and provided general results leading to normative conclusions on the desirability of specific tax reform options. However, recent research has shown that this approach yields inconclusive results, notably due to identification and endogeneity issues, and the difficulty to account for the true determinants of governments' actions. The dynamic scoring approach combining microsimulation and macro models proves more useful in this respect, especially in order to draw policy recommendations while accounting for the second-round effects of tax reforms. I illustrate these arguments by analysing the growth impact of a hypothetical change from the current flat personal income tax (PIT) rates to progressive taxes in Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries. I find that the estimated impact of such a reform would be rather small but positive when using the dynamic scoring method, while the less-reliable traditional growth regressions would suggest adverse growth effects.

Open access