IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Why demand uncertainty curbs investment: Evidence from a panel of Italian manufacturing firms

  • Bontempi, Maria Elena
  • Golinelli, Roberto
  • Parigi, Giuseppe

Theoretically, the effect on investment of uncertainty over the demand for a firm's product is unclear because of the influence of several factors, such as the production technology and the amount of competition in the product market. It has not been possible, until now, to investigate more closely the interplay of different factors in the time dimension because the empirical research has been based on cross-section analysis. This omission makes biased estimates of the investment-uncertainty relationship likely. The aim of this paper is to extend the findings of the empirical literature using a panel of Italian firms in the period 1996-2004, covering a complete business cycle. The availability of panel survey data on companies' investment plans, expected future sales and demand uncertainty allows us to account for unobservable individual differences between firms, macroeconomic shocks and the evolution of the investment-uncertainty relationship. A key finding of our paper concerns the role of the competition encountered by Italian firms in 1996-2004. The gradual loss of market power over time of Italian manufacturing firms, along with the increasing flexibility of labour input has weakened the negative effect of uncertainty on investment decisions. We show that, in repeated cross-section estimates, the omission of firm-specific effects together with the dynamic interplay described above, would have lead to misleading conclusions about the relevance of demand uncertainty in explaining investment decisions.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6X4M-4VXB6YF-2/2/32534f7bfa8685fdb445d1a73eecec56
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Macroeconomics.

Volume (Year): 32 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 218-238

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:jmacro:v:32:y:2010:i:1:p:218-238
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622617

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. John V. Leahy & Toni M. Whited, 1995. "The Effect of Uncertainty on Investment: Some Stylized Facts," NBER Working Papers 4986, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Pindyck, Robert S, 1988. "Irreversible Investment, Capacity Choice, and the Value of the Firm," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(5), pages 969-85, December.
  3. Andrew B. Abel & Janice C. Eberly, 1993. "A Unified Model of Investment Under Uncertainty," NBER Working Papers 4296, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Carruth, Alan & Dickerson, Andrew & Henley, Andrew, 2000. " What Do We Know about Investment under Uncertainty?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(2), pages 119-53, April.
  5. Abel, Andrew B. & Eberly, Janice C., 1997. "An exact solution for the investment and value of a firm facing uncertainty, adjustment costs, and irreversibility," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(4-5), pages 831-852, May.
  6. Palumbo, Giuliana & Iossa, Elisabetta, 2002. "Lender liability in the Consumer Credit Market," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 451, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  7. Chirinko, Robert S. & Schaller, Huntley, 2009. "The irreversibility premium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 390-408, April.
  8. Giulio Piccirilli & Nicola ACOCELLA & Riccardo LEONI, 2008. "Social Pacts, Employment and Growth. A reappraisal of Ezio Tarantelli’s thought," Rivista Internazionale di Scienze Sociali, Vita e Pensiero, Pubblicazioni dell'Universita' Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, vol. 116(3), pages 365-372.
  9. Andrew B. Abel & Janice C. Eberly, 1995. "Optimal Investment with Costly Reversibility," NBER Working Papers 5091, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Nick Bloom & Stephen Bond & John Van Reenen, 2007. "Uncertainty and Investment Dynamics," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(2), pages 391-415.
  11. Laarni Bulan & Christopher Mayer & C. Tsuriel Somerville, . "Irreversible Investment, Real Options, and Competition: Evidence from Real Estate Development," Zell/Lurie Center Working Papers 391, Wharton School Samuel Zell and Robert Lurie Real Estate Center, University of Pennsylvania.
  12. Ben S. Bernanke, 1980. "Irreversibility, Uncertainty, and Cyclical Investment," NBER Working Papers 0502, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Bloom, Nicholas & Bond, Stephen Roy & Van Reenen, John, 2003. "Uncertainty and Company Investment Dynamics: Empirical Evidence for UK Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 4025, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Andrews, Donald W K, 1993. "Tests for Parameter Instability and Structural Change with Unknown Change Point," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(4), pages 821-56, July.
  15. Andrew B. Abel, 1984. "A Stochastic Model of Investment, Marginal q and the Market Value of theFirm," NBER Working Papers 1484, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Paola Caselli & Patrizio Pagano & Fabiano Schivardi, 2003. "Uncertainty and the slowdown of capital accumulation in Europe," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(1), pages 79-89.
  17. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  18. Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 1995. "Selection corrections for panel data models under conditional mean independence assumptions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 115-132, July.
  19. Ian Domowitz & R. Glenn Hubbard & Bruce C. Petersen, 1986. "Business Cycles and the Relationship Between Concentration and Price-Cost Margins," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 17(1), pages 1-17, Spring.
  20. Hong Bo & Robert Lensin, 2005. "Is the Investment-Uncertainty Relationship Nonlinear? An Empirical Analysis for the Netherlands," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 72(286), pages 307-331, 05.
  21. Vivek Ghosal & Prakash Loungani, 1995. "Product market competition and the impact of price uncertainty on investment: some evidence from U.S. manufacturing industries," International Finance Discussion Papers 517, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  22. Andrew B. Abel & Janice B. Eberly, . "The Effects of Irreversibility and Uncertainty on Capital Accumulation," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 21-95, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  23. Bar-Ilan, Avner & Strange, William C, 1996. "Investment Lags," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 610-22, June.
  24. Luigi Guiso & Giuseppe Parigi, 1999. "Investment And Demand Uncertainty," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 185-227, February.
  25. J. A. Hausman, 1976. "Specification Tests in Econometrics," Working papers 185, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  26. Martin, Stephen, 1984. "The Misuse of Accounting Rates of Return: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 501-06, June.
  27. Caballero, Ricardo J. & Pindyck, Robert S., 1992. "Uncertainty, investment, and industry evolution," Working papers 3460-92., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  28. Sakellaris, Plutarchos, 1994. "A Note on Competitive Investment under Uncertainty: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 1107-12, September.
  29. Andrea Brandolini & Piero Casadio & Piero Cipollone & Marco Magnani & Alfonso Rosolia, 2007. "Employment Growth in Italy in the 1990s: Institutional Arrangements and Market Forces," AIEL Series in Labour Economics, in: Nicola Acocella & Riccardo Leoni (ed.), Social Pacts, Employment and Growth. A Reappraisal of Ezio Tarantelli’s Thought, edition 1, chapter 4, pages 31-68 AIEL - Associazione Italiana Economisti del Lavoro.
  30. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & BRUCE C. PETERSEN, 1988. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(1), pages 141-206.
  31. Andrew B. Abel & Avinash Dixit & Janice C. Eberly & Robert S. Pindyck, 1996. "Options, the Value of Capital, and Investment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(3), pages 753-77, August.
  32. Lee, J. & Shin, K., 1997. "The Role of a Variable Input in the Relationship Between Investment and Uncertainty," Papers 97-98-11, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  33. Blundell, Richard & Bond, Stephen, 1998. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 115-143, August.
  34. Nijman, Theo & Verbeek, Marno, 1992. "Nonresponse in Panel Data: The Impact on Estimates of a Life Cycle Consumption Function," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 7(3), pages 243-57, July-Sept.
  35. Pindyck, Robert S, 1993. "A Note on Competitive Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 273-77, March.
  36. Barnett, Steven A. & Sakellaris, Plutarchos, 1998. "Nonlinear response of firm investment to Q:: Testing a model of convex and non-convex adjustment costs1," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 261-288, July.
  37. Elisabetta Iossa & Giuliana Palumbo, 2010. "Over-optimism and lender liability in the consumer credit market," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 62(2), pages 374-394, April.
  38. David Greasley & Jakob B. Madsen, 2006. "Investment and Uncertainty: Precipitating the Great Depression in the United States," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 73(291), pages 393-412, 08.
  39. Chatelain, J.-B. & Teurlai, J.-C., 2001. "Pitfalls in Investment Euler Equations," Working papers 81, Banque de France.
  40. Hansen, Lars Peter, 1982. "Large Sample Properties of Generalized Method of Moments Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 1029-54, July.
  41. Bulan, Laarni T., 2005. "Real options, irreversible investment and firm uncertainty: New evidence from U.S. firms," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3-4), pages 255-279.
  42. Paul Butzen & Catherine Fuss & Philip Vermeulen, 2002. "The impact of uncertainty on investment plans," Working Paper Research 24, National Bank of Belgium.
  43. Hartman, Richard, 1972. "The effects of price and cost uncertainty on investment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 258-266, October.
  44. Lensink, Robert & Steen, Paul van der & Sterken, Elmer, 2000. "Uncertainty and growth of the firm," CCSO Working Papers 200014, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
  45. Elena Bontempi & Alessandra Del Boca & Alessandra Franzosi & Marzio Galeotti & Paola Rota, 2004. "Capital Heterogenity: Does it Matter? Fundamental Q and Investment on a Panel of Italian Firms," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(4), pages 674-690, Winter.
  46. Nijman, T.E. & Verbeek, M.J.C.M., 1992. "Non-response in panel data : The impact on estimates of a life cycle consumption function," Other publications TiSEM 3c661e33-2cd1-47f1-a7d9-3, School of Economics and Management.
  47. Abel, Andrew B, 1983. "Optimal Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 228-33, March.
  48. McDonald, Robert & Siegel, Daniel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-27, November.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jmacro:v:32:y:2010:i:1:p:218-238. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.