Size of Training Firms and Cumulated Long-Run Unemployment Exposure – The Role of Firms, Luck, and Ability in Young Workers’ Careers
International Journal of Manpower,
TV and Entrepreneurship
IWH Discussion Papers,
We empirically analyse whether television (TV) can influence entrepreneurial identity and incidence. To identify causal effects, we utilise a quasi-natural experiment setting. During the division of Germany after WWII into West Germany with a free-market economy and the socialistic East Germany with centrally-planned economy, some East German regions had access to West German public TV that – differently from the East German TV – transmitted images, values, attitudes and view of life compatible with the free-market economy principles and supportive of entrepreneurship. We show that during the 40 years of socialistic regime in East Germany entrepreneurship was highly regulated and virtually impossible and that the prevalent formal and informal institutions broke the traditional ties linking entrepreneurship to the characteristics of individuals so that there were hardly any differences in the levels and development of entrepreneurship between East German regions with and without West German TV signal. Using both, regional and individual level data, we show then that, for the period after the Unification in 1990 which made starting an own business in East Germany, possible again, entrepreneurship incidence is higher among the residents of East German regions that had access to West German public TV, indicating that TV can, while transmitting specific images, values, attitudes and view of life, directly impact on the entrepreneurial mindset of individuals. Moreover, we find that young individuals born after 1980 in East German households that had access to West German TV are also more entrepreneurial. These findings point to second-order effects due to inter-personal and inter-generational transmission, a mechanism that can cause persistent differences in the entrepreneurship incidence across (geographically defined) population groups.
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The Forward-looking Disclosures of Corporate Managers: Theory and Evidence
IWH Discussion Papers,
We consider an infinitely repeated game in which a privately informed, long-lived manager raises funds from short-lived investors in order to finance a project. The manager can signal project quality to investors by making a (possibly costly) forward-looking disclosure about her project’s potential for success. We find that if the manager’s disclosures are costly, she will never release forward-looking statements that do not convey information to external investors. Furthermore, managers of firms that are transparent and face significant disclosure-related costs will refrain from forward-looking disclosures. In contrast, managers of opaque and profitable firms will follow a policy of accurate disclosures. To test our findings empirically, we devise an index that captures the quantity of forward-looking disclosures in public firms’ 10-K reports, and relate it to multiple firm characteristics. For opaque firms, our index is positively correlated with a firm’s profitability and financing needs. For transparent firms, there is only a weak relation between our index and firm fundamentals. Furthermore, the overall level of forward-looking disclosures declined significantly between 2001 and 2009, possibly as a result of the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
Economic Failure and the Role of Plant Age and Size
Small Business Economics,
This paper introduces a large-scale administrative panel data set on corporate bankruptcy in Germany that allows for an econometric analysis of involuntary exits where previous studies mixed voluntary and involuntary exits. Approximately 83 % of all bankruptcies occur in plants with not more than 10 employees, and 61 % of all bankrupt plants are not older than 5 years. The descriptive statistics and regression analysis indicate substantial negative age dependence with respect to bankruptcy risk but confirm negative size dependence for mature plants only. Our results corroborate hypotheses stressing increasing capabilities and positional advantage, both predicting negative age dependence with respect to bankruptcy risk due to productivity improvements. The results are not consistent with the theories explaining age dependence via imprinting or structural inertia.
IWH-Industrieumfrage in Ostdeutschland zum Jahresauftakt 2014: Umsatzerwartungen und Beschäftigungspläne für 2014 im Plus
Im Verarbeitenden Gewerbe Ostdeutschlands liefen die Geschäfte im Jahr 2013 zunächst schleppend. Erst im dritten Quartal gab es einen Aufwärtsschub. Die Erwartungen wurden deutlich optimistischer. Die Auftragslage, die Produktions- und die Ertragserwartungen verbesserten sich. Die schwache Geschäftstätigkeit im ersten Halbjahr hat Spuren bei den Umsätzen hinterlassen. Sie bleiben deutlich hinter den Erwartungen zurück. Am besten lief es noch für die Hersteller von Ge- und Verbrauchsgütern. Auch die Ertragslage hat sich gegenüber dem Jahr 2012 verschlechtert. Vor allem die Hersteller von Investitionsgütern litten unter einer schwachen Nachfrage. Für das Jahr 2014 erwarten die vom IWH befragten Unternehmen wieder bessere Geschäfte. Mehr als die Hälfte der Unternehmen geht von Zuwächsen beim Umsatz aus (jedes fünfte von mehr als 10%) und auch die Exportunternehmen sind diesbezüglich zuversichtlich. Die Beschäftigungspläne sind deutlich optimistischer als vor einem Jahr. Reichlich ein Drittel der Unternehmen will Personal einstellen, nur jedes zehnte geht davon aus, dass bis Ende 2014 Beschäftigung abgebaut wird.
A Control Group Study of Incubators’ Impact to Promote Firm Survival
The Journal of Technology Transfer,
It is widely unclear as to whether start-up firms supported by publicly-initiated incubator initiatives have higher survival rates than comparable start-up firms that have not received support by such initiatives. This paper contributes to the underlying discussion by performing a large-scale matched-pairs analysis of the long-term survival of 371 incubator firms (after their graduation) from five German incubators and a control group of 371 comparable non-incubated firms. The analysis covers a 10-year time span. To account for the problem of selection bias, a non-parametric matching approach is applied to identify an appropriate control group. For neither of the five incubator locations, we find statistically significant higher survival probabilities for firms located in incubators compared to firms located outside those incubator organizations. For three incubator locations the analysis reveals statistically significant lower chances of survival for those start-ups receiving support by an incubator. The empirical results, therefore, raise some doubts regarding the impacts of incubation on long-term firm survival.