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Many papers have analyzed the effects of foreign acquisition on firm productivity, articulating its positive impacts. However, an important issue remains: is there a general foreign acquisition effect, or is there any heterogeneity in the effects? This paper reports on the analysis of over 3,400 majority foreign acquisitions in Hungary. The main result (which exists in a propensity score matching sample as well) of the difference-in-differences analysis is that only acquirers from higher income countries foster labor productivity significantly — and this effect increases with the income gap between Hungary and the country of origin -, while acquirers from lower income countries do not induce statistically significant effects.

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This paper examines the impact of medium- and short-term financial constraints on the probability of export participation of SMEs in 28 post-communist countries. The regression analysis conducted over the cross-sectional sample of SMEs taken from the BEEPS III-IV-V shows that the medium- and short-term financial constraints produce a significantly negative effect on the probability of exporting. Although there exist arguments for why the effects of medium- and short-term financial constraints can differ from each other, both the medium- and short-term financial constraints appear to reduce the probability of exporting equally by 25%. The regression results also suggest that more productive, innovative, and larger SMEs, and also SMEs with international quality certificates are more likely to export. When the regressions are separately estimated for the first-time and continuous exporters, it appears that only the probability of exporting of continuous exporters is significantly sensitive to the financial constraints. Furthermore, the regressions separately run for the direct and indirect exporters show that the financial constraints have a larger effect on the probability of exporting of indirect exporters. The heterogeneity analysis shows that there is a significant heterogeneity in the effects of medium- and short-term financial constraints on the likelihood of exporting across regions, industries, periods, and firm types.

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Benford's Law is a useful tool for detecting fraud in financial statements. In this paper we test the financial item named ‘Work performed by the undertaking for its own purpose and capitalised’ applying this tool. The data are taken from the financial reports of all companies submitted to the Serbian Business Register Agency for the period of 2008–2013. Our conclusion shows that there is a very high probability that the frequency distribution of the second digit does not satisfy Benford's Law. In other words, it implies that certain manipulations have been usually done with the second digit of the aforementioned item in the financial statement. This research confirms our hypothesis that financial statement frauds are usually conducted using the second digit.

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The paper tests the impact of gender diversity and educational attainment of owners and company directors on the performance of private firms in the Slovak economy. The paper demonstrates that in retail trade the gender diversity both in owners and company directors within a company leads to higher total factor productivity and partially lower propensity to fail. However, in other industries the companies with higher proportion of females in the ownership structure or among company directors tend to be less efficient and grow less. Although there is evidence that higher proportion of females self-select into lower risk sectors and occupations, our main results hold after controlling for it. In terms of educational attainment, the companies with higher proportions of owners or company directors with university education are more productive and grow more in terms of turnover, but there is no evidence that default of companies is related to educational attainment. We suggest that education is unique and superior resource and it generally benefits the companies by having higher proportion of educated owners and/or directors.

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Trust in financial institutions can be seen as a foundation for loyalty and profits in the banking industry and is relevant for the macro economy as well. Young customers are more likely to lack trust due to their lack of personal experience in finance, although parental advice may lower their risk. In this paper the authors combine trust measures with intergenerational communication theory and test it on a large dyadic sample using Z-scores. The results show a strong, holistic intergenerational effect on institutional trust, but shed light on heterogeneity in the sample due to gender, financial independence and different communication styles.

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Risk captured through the volatility of stock markets stands as the essential concern for financial investors. The financial crisis of 2008 demonstrated that stock markets are highly integrated. Slovakia, Hungary and Poland went through identical centralist economic arrangement, but nowadays operate under diverse stock markets, monetary system and tax structure. The study aims to measure the risk level of the Slovak Stock Market (SAX index), Budapest Stock Exchange (BUX index) and Poland Stock Market (WIG20 index) based on the portfolio diversification model. Results of the study provide information on the diversification benefits generated when SAX, BUX and WIG20 join their stock markets. The study considers that each stock index represents an independent portfolio. Portfolios are built to stand on the available companies that are listed on each stock index from 2007 till 2017. The results of the study show that BUX generates the lowest risk and highest weighted average return. In contrast, SAX is the riskiest portfolio but generates the lowest weighted average return. The results find that the stock prices of BUX have larger positive correlation than the stock prices of SAX. Moreover, the highest diversification benefits are realized when Portfolio SAX joins Portfolio BUX and the lowest diversification benefits are achieved when SAX joins WIG20.

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This paper examines the paradox between high relative levels of job satisfaction and the characteristics of women's jobs compared to men's in Spain. Three hypothesis are considered: i) the existence of a selection bias when participating in the labour market; ii) of the presence of adaptive job satisfaction; and iii) the existence of differences related to preferences of different nature to strictly labour issues.

The study shows that, although having lower working conditions, women are more likely to be satisfied at work than men are. This paradox persists regardless of the inclusion of a great range of variables of different nature (objective and subjective), the age group and educational level under consideration. The Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition suggests that women's preferences are actually influencing the differences in job satisfaction. However, it is not demonstrated that these differences disappear as age decreases or educational level increases. The probable existence of a “glass ceiling” that prevents women from having access to posts of greater responsibility and higher wages could cause that women who actually reach them are more satisfied than their male colleagues. As the labour market and society become more equal, this paradox might dilute.

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A basic principle of economics is that people always prefer a larger set of opportunities. Money illusion can be considered as the phenomenon when people may not correctly perceive their budget constraints, and may act in ways that run counter to this preference. In this interpretation, money illusion is a cognitive bias, worthwhile to overcome. Herein I argue that taking a view of human decision-making based on certain strands of cognitive psychology, one can reinterpret the evidence for money illusion in two ways. First, I claim that money illusion is inescapable to some extent, and saying that we suffer from it is similar to alleging that we experience optical illusions, only because we are unable to see, say, individual atoms. Second, taking a view on “preferences” different from the traditional one, I contend that it may bring little benefit to get rid of money illusion even in the cases where it is possible to do so. To follow up the visual analogy, even if we can improve our eyesight it is not obviously desirable. These arguments seem to lead to a Candidean disposition: there is no possible improvement on the state of affairs as far as “money illusion” is concerned. Nonetheless, I will make some positive proposals concerning economic policy and economics research.

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The twenty-first century brought with it the proliferation of new media. We carry mobile devices and smartphones with us nearly everywhere we go. Constantly hooked up to the world by these tools, the bigger question is why we are sometimes not available. Our personal networks have partly migrated to online social networks, and new networks now penetrate our everyday lives in the digital sphere. In this online survey research, the authors searched for insights into how important smartphones and Facebook, the most popular social media site in Hungary, have become in people's lives. The kinds of attitudes that characterise the use of these tools were analysed, especially in the case of privacy and the use of personal data. The aim of this research — by establishing the actual situation — is to show how modern media, publicity, and privacy are linked, and how people reveal themselves by their constant media presence.

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The global automotive industry has been exposed to an overproduction crisis for several decades. Under the pressure of restructuring, automotive companies renew both the geographical scope and the technological standardization of their production processes. We analyze the effects this restructuring had on the development of European economies in order to understand whether vertical specializations in the automotive value chain can lead to Central and Eastern European countries’ catching up to advanced economies, or whether such specializations reproduce new forms of core-periphery relations. In order to answer this question, we introduce a new methodological approach to understand vertical specialization in the global value chain from a semi-peripheral perspective. We combine the theory of global value chains with Vernon's product life-cycle theory. In the research we focus on the standardization of the production of electric engines behind the geographical relocation of production between core and periphery.

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