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The Euro and Firm Restructuring

In: Europe and the Euro

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  • Matteo Bugamelli
  • Fabiano Schivardi
  • Roberta Zizza

Abstract

We test whether and how the adoption of the euro, narrowly defined as the end of competitive devaluations, has affected member states' productive structures, distinguishing between within and across sector reallocation. We find evidence that the euro has been accompanied by a reallocation of activity within rather than across sectors. Since its adoption, productivity growth has been relatively stronger in country-sectors that once relied more on competitive devaluations to regain price competitiveness. This effect is robust to potential omitted-variable bias and correlated effects. Firm-level evidence from Italian manufacturing confirms that low-tech businesses, which arguably benefitted most from devaluations, have been restructuring more since the adoption of the euro. Restructuring has entailed a shift of business focus from production to upstream and downstream activities, such as product design, advertising, marketing and distribution, and a corresponding reduction in the share of blue collar workers.

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This chapter was published in:

  • Alberto Alesina & Francesco Giavazzi, 2010. "Europe and the Euro," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number ales08-1.
    This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 11663.

    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberch:11663

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