Are cooperatives the weakest link in European banking? A non-parametric metafrontier approach
This paper investigates the productive performance of cooperative banking firms as compared to their commercial and savings counterparts, accounting for technology heterogeneity due to different ownership in European banking. Based on the metafrontier notion, we introduce a methodology which allows the identification of technology gaps among different bank types and their decomposition into input- and output-invariant components. Our findings suggest that the type-specific frontier corresponding to cooperative banking firms lies, to its largest part, away from the European metafrontier. Furthermore, within the cooperative bank type a dichotomy seems to arise. The decomposition results suggest that the cooperatives' technology gap is attributed to output production rather than input use.
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