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The complex behavior of firms' size dynamics

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  • Gallegati, M.
  • Palestrini, A.

Abstract

This paper's aim is to shed some light to the complex dynamics of firms' size distribution (FSD). In particular we give an alternative explanation to the Cabral and Mata (2003) finding. In that paper they show that the distribution of surviving firms tends to the log-normal distribution. As an explanation they consider the "small-firms selection" argument and introduce the "financial constraint" model. We give an alternative explanation based on a "sample selection bias" argumentation. In other terms, a cohort of surviving firms may have a positive average rate of growth. This simple fact breaks the assumptions needed in order to have an asymptotic Pareto FSD. Furthermore, we show how a simple modification of a well-known multiplicative process of firms' growth, taking into account common and idiosyncratic elements, may reconcile an old aggregate-sector puzzle (Quandt, 1966) on firms' size distribution reported in the literature. The paper shows the possibility to have aggregate Pareto distributed FSD and non-Pareto distributed sectors.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.

Volume (Year): 75 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (July)
Pages: 69-76

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:75:y:2010:i:1:p:69-76

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jebo

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Keywords: Firms' size Kesten process Common components;

References

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  1. Lu�s M B Cabral & Jos� Mata, 2003. "On the Evolution of the Firm Size Distribution: Facts and Theory," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1075-1090, September.
  2. Mario Forni & Marc Hallin & Lucrezia Reichlin & Marco Lippi, 2000. "The generalised dynamic factor model: identification and estimation," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/10143, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  3. Lucia Alessi & Matteo Barigozzi & Marco Capasso, 2006. "A Dynamic Factor Analysis of Business Cycle on Firm-Level Data," LEM Papers Series 2006/27, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
  4. Horvath, Michael, 2000. "Sectoral shocks and aggregate fluctuations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 69-106, February.
  5. Mustafa Caglayan & Neslihan Ozkan & Christopher F Baum, 2002. "Sectoral Fluctuations in U.K. Firms' Investment Expenditures," Research Papers 2002_01, University of Liverpool Management School.
  6. Erzo G. J. Luttmer, 2007. "Selection, Growth, and the Size Distribution of Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1103-1144, 08.
  7. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 64, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  8. Shea, John S, 2002. "Complementarities and Comovements," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 34(2), pages 412-33, May.
  9. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1982. "Selection and the Evolution of Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(3), pages 649-70, May.
  10. Gaffeo, Edoardo & Gallegati, Mauro & Palestrini, Antonio, 2003. "On the size distribution of firms: additional evidence from the G7 countries," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 324(1), pages 117-123.
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Cited by:
  1. Carl Chiarella & Corrado Di Guilmi, 2010. "The Financial Instability Hypothesis:a Stochastic Microfoundation Framework," Research Paper Series 273, Quantitative Finance Research Centre, University of Technology, Sydney.
  2. Guo, Jinzhong & Xu, Qi & Chen, Qinghua & Wang, Yougui, 2013. "Firm size distribution and mobility of the top 500 firms in China, the United States and the world," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 392(13), pages 2903-2914.
  3. Pedro Mazeda Gil & Fernanda Figueiredo, 2011. "Firm Size Distribution under Horizontal and Vertical Innovation," DEGIT Conference Papers c016_065, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
  4. Segarra, Agustí & Teruel, Mercedes, 2012. "An appraisal of firm size distribution: Does sample size matter?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 314-328.

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