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Characterising Euro Area Multinationals

  • Ingo Geishecker
  • Holger Görg
  • Daria Taglioni

This study uses firm-level data on a large sample of European manufacturing firms to investigate the links between opening up foreign affiliates and firms' productivity. The analysis is guided by recent theoretical models of international trade with firm heterogeneity. The paper finds that while only a small share of euro area firms locate affiliates abroad, these firms account for over-proportionally large shares of output, employment and profits in their home countries. They have higher survival rates and their productivity growth is also higher. The strongest contribution is by productivity growth of existing firms with a multinational status rather than entry into the multinational status. Finally, there are performance premia for multinationals with a large number of affiliates abroad relative to those with a small number. Copyright 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal World Economy.

Volume (Year): 32 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (01)
Pages: 49-76

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Handle: RePEc:bla:worlde:v:32:y:2009:i:1:p:49-76
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  1. Greenaway, David & Kneller, Richard, 2008. "Exporting, productivity and agglomeration," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(5), pages 919-939, July.
  2. Lucia Foster & John Haltiwanger & C.J. Krizan, 1998. "Aggregate Productivity Growth: Lessons from Microeconomic Evidence," NBER Working Papers 6803, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Görg, Holger & Strobl, Eric, 2002. "'Footloose' Multinationals?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3402, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen, 2006. "Firm Structure, Multinationals, and Manufacturing Plant Deaths," Working Paper Series WP06-7, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  5. Elhanan Helpman & Marc J. Melitz & Stephen R. Yeaple, 2003. "Export versus FDI," NBER Working Papers 9439, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. GIRMA, Sourafel & GOERG, Holger & STROBL, Eric, 2004. "Exports, international investment, and plant performance : evidence from a non-parametric test," CORE Discussion Papers 2004009, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  7. Arnold, Jens Matthias & Hussinger, Katrin, 2006. "Exports versus FDI in German manufacturing: firm performance and participation in international markets," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2006,04, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  8. Delgado, Miguel A. & Farinas, Jose C. & Ruano, Sonia, 2002. "Firm productivity and export markets: a non-parametric approach," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 397-422, August.
  9. Hennart, J.M.A., 2007. "The theoretical rationale for a multinationality - performance relationship," Other publications TiSEM b4c7bdd4-bfda-467f-9886-3, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
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