Interbank Lending and Distress: Observables, Unobservables, and Network Structure
Deutsche Bundesbank Discussion Paper, No. 18/2014,
We provide empirical evidence on the relevance of systemic risk through the interbank lending channel. We adapt a spatial probit model that allows for correlated error terms in the cross-sectional variation that depend on the measured network connections of the banks. The latter are in our application observed interbank exposures among German bank holding companies during 2001 and 2006. The results clearly indicate significant spillover effects between banks’ probabilities of distress and the financial profiles of connected peers. Better capitalized and managed connections reduce the banks own risk. Higher network centrality reduces the probability of distress, supporting the notion that more complete networks tend to be more stable. Finally, spatial autocorrelation is significant and negative. This last result may indicate too-many-to-fail mechanics such that bank distress is less likely if many peers already experienced distress.
Regional House Price Dynamics and Voting Behavior in the FOMC
This paper examines the impact of house price gaps in Federal Reserve districts on the voting behavior in the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) from 1978 to 2010. Applying a random effects ordered probit model, we find that a higher regional house price gap significantly increases (decreases) the probability that this district's representative in the FOMC casts interest rate votes in favor of tighter (easier) monetary policy. In addition, our results suggest that Bank presidents react more sensitively to regional house price developments than Board members do.
The Social Capital Legacy of Communism-results from the Berlin Wall Experiment
European Journal of Political Economy,
In this paper we establish a direct link between the communist history, the resulting structure of social capital, and attitudes toward spatial mobility. We argue that the communist regime induced a specific social capital mix that discouraged geographic mobility even after its demise. Theoretically, we integrate two branches of the social capital literature into one more comprehensive framework distinguishing an open type and a closed type of social capital. Using the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP) we take advantage of the natural experiment that separated Germany into two parts after the WWII to identify the causal effect of social capital on mobility. We estimate a three equation ordered probit model and provide strong empirical evidence for our theoretical propositions.
FDI and the National Innovation System - Evidence from Central and Eastern Europe
D. Dyker (ed.), Network Dynamics in Emerging Regions of Europe, Imperial College Press,
The paper investigates strategic motives, technological activities and determinants of foreign investment enterprises’ embeddedness in post-transition economies (Eastern Germany and selected Central East European countries). The empirical study makes use of the IWH FDI micro database. Results of the descriptive analysis of investment motives show that market access dominates over efficiency seeking and other motives. The majority of investors are technologically active in the region as a whole, but countries differ in terms of performance. The probit model estimations show that firm specific characteristics, among them innovativeness and autonomy from parent company, are important determinants of foreign investment enterprises’ embeddedness.
Institutional transition, social capital mix and local ties – Does Communist legacy explain low labour mobility?
Volkswirtschaftliche Diskussionsbeiträge, (66),
This paper empirically analyses the question why East Germans facing weak regional labour markets show rather limited spatial mobility. Using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel, our estimation of a simultaneous three equation ordered probit model shows that informal social capital reduces regional mobility while formal social capital supports it. Furthermore, we find that East Germans acculturated in a communist system are more invested in locally bounded informal social capital than in the mobility supporting formal social capital. Low spatial mobility of East Germans, we conclude, is to an important part attributable to a system specific social capital mix.
Innovation and Skills from a Sectoral Perspective: A Linked Employer-Employee Analysis
Economics of Innovation and New Technology,
Science and engineering skills as well as management and leadership skills are often referred to as sources of innovative activities within companies. Broken down into sectoral innovation patterns, this article examines the role of formal education, actual occupation and work experience in the innovation performance in manufacturing ﬁrms within a probit model. It uses unique micro data for Germany (LIAB) that contain information about corporate innovation activities and the qualiﬁcation of employees in terms of formal education, actual professional status and work experience. We ﬁnd clear diﬀerences in the human capital endowment between sectors according to the Pavitt classiﬁcation. Sectors with a high share of highly skilled employees engage in above average product innovation (specialized suppliers and science-based industries). However, according to our estimation results, across as well as within these sectors a large share of highly skilled employees does not substantially increase the probability of a ﬁrm being innovative.
Margins of international banking: Is there a productivity pecking order in banking, too?
Bundesbank Discussion Paper 12/2009,
Modern trade theory emphasizes firm-level productivity differentials to explain
the cross-border activities of non-financial firms. This study tests whether a
productivity pecking order also determines international banking activities. Using
a novel dataset that contains all German banks’ international activities, we
estimate the ordered probability of a presence abroad (extensive margin) and the
volume of international assets (intensive margin). Methodologically, we enrich the
conventional Heckman selection model to account for the self-selection of banks
into different modes of foreign activities using an ordered probit. Four main
findings emerge. First, similar to results for non-financial firms, a productivity
pecking order drives bank internationalization. Second, only a few non-financial
firms engage in international trade, but many banks hold international assets, and
only a few large banks engage in foreign direct investment. Third, in addition to
productivity, risk factors matter for international banking. Fourth, gravity-type
variables have an important impact on international banking activities.
Forecasting Currency Crises: Which Methods signaled the South African Crisis of June 2006?
South African Journal of Economics,
In this paper we test the ability of three of the most popular methods to forecast South African currency crises with a special emphasis on their out-of-sample performance. We choose the latest crisis of June 2006 to conduct an out-of-sample experiment. The results show that the signals approach was not able to forecast the out-of-sample crisis correctly; the probit approach was able
to predict the crisis but only with models, that were based on raw data. The Markov-regime- switching approach predicts the out-of-sample crisis well. However, the results are not straightforward. In-sample, the probit models performed remarkably well and were also able to detect, at least to some extent, out-of-sample currency crises before their occurrence. The recommendation is to not restrict the forecasting to only one approach.