Financial and legal constraints to firm growth - Does size matter?
AbstractUsing a unique firm-level survey data base, covering fifty four countries, the authors investigate whether different financial, legal, and corruptionissues that firms report as constraints, actually affect their growth rates. The results show that the extent to which these factors constrain a firm's growth depends very much on its size, and that it is consistently the smallest firms that are most adversely affected by all these constraints. Firm growth is more affected by reported constraints in countries with underdeveloped financial, and legal systems, and higher corruption. So, policy measures to improve financial, and legal development, and reduce corruption are well justified in promoting firm growth, particularly the development of the small, and medium enterprise sector. But the evidence also shows that the intuitive descriptors of an"efficient"legal system, are not correlated with the components of the general legal constraints that predict firm growth. This finding suggests that the mechanism by which the legal system affects firm performance, is not well understood. The authors'findings also provide evidence that the corruption of bank officials, constraints firm growth. This"institutional failure"should be taken into account, when modeling the monitoring role of financial institutions in overcoming market failures due to informational asymmetries.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 2784.
Date of creation: 28 Feb 2002
Date of revision:
Payment Systems&Infrastructure; Decentralization; Small Scale Enterprise; Legal Products; Microfinance; Governance Indicators; National Governance; Legal Products; Microfinance; Private Participation in Infrastructure;
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