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Technology and Cost Efficiency in Universal Banking A “Thick Frontier”-Analysis of the German Banking Industry

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  • Günter Lang
  • Peter Welzel

Abstract

Using 1992 data of 1490 banks covering about 40% of German banking, we specify a multi-product translog cost function and follow the “thick frontier”-approach to control for cost inefficiency when evaluating the technology of banking. Scale economies are found to exist up to a size of about 5 billion DM of total assets, with diseconomies being caused by non-operating costs. There is hardly any evidence of economies of scope. Compared to cost inefficiency external factors play a surprisingly strong role in explaining cost differences between high-cost and low-cost banks. Smaller banks turn out to be more responsive to input prices. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Suggested Citation

  • Günter Lang & Peter Welzel, 1998. "Technology and Cost Efficiency in Universal Banking A “Thick Frontier”-Analysis of the German Banking Industry," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 63-84, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jproda:v:10:y:1998:i:1:p:63-84
    DOI: 10.1023/A:1018346332447
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. Zieschang, Kimberly D., 1983. "A note on the decomposition of cost efficiency into technical and allocative components," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 401-405, December.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Doris Neu Berger, 1998. "Industrial Organization of Banking: A Review," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(1), pages 97-118.
    2. M. Koetter, 2005. "Evaluating the German Bank Merger Wave," Working Papers 05-16, Utrecht School of Economics.
    3. Chung-Hua Shen, 2005. "Cost efficiency and banking performances in a partial universal banking system: application of the panel smooth threshold model," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(9), pages 993-1009.
    4. Badunenko, Oleg & Fritsch, Michael & Stephan, Andreas, 2008. "Allocative efficiency measurement revisited--Do we really need input prices?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 1093-1109, September.
    5. repec:wfo:wstudy:25688 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Berger, Allen N. & Cummins, J. David & Weiss, Mary A. & Zi, Hongmin, 2000. "Conglomeration versus Strategic Focus: Evidence from the Insurance Industry," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 323-362, October.
    7. Drake, Leigh & Hall, Maximilian J.B. & Simper, Richard, 2006. "The impact of macroeconomic and regulatory factors on bank efficiency: A non-parametric analysis of Hong Kong's banking system," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 1443-1466, May.
    8. Al-Jarhi, Mabid Ali, 2005. "The Case For Universal Banking As A Component Of Islamic Banking," Islamic Economic Studies, The Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI), vol. 13, pages 2-65.
    9. Chavas, Jean-Paul & Barham, Bradford, 2007. "On the Microeconomics of Diversification under Uncertainty and Learning," Staff Paper Series 515, University of Wisconsin, Agricultural and Applied Economics.
    10. Lang, Gunter & Welzel, Peter, 1999. "Mergers among German Cooperative Banks: A Panel-Based Stochastic Frontier Analysis," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 273-286, December.
    11. Subal kumbhakar & Ana Lozano-Vivas, 2005. "Deregulation and Productivity: The Case of Spanish Banks," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 27(3), pages 331-351, January.
    12. repec:kap:iaecre:v:10:y:2004:i:1:p:1-15 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Fotios Pasiouras, 2008. "International evidence on the impact of regulations and supervision on banks’ technical efficiency: an application of two-stage data envelopment analysis," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 187-223, February.
    14. Bos, Jaap W. B. & Heid, Frank & Koetter, Michael & Kolari, James W. & Kool, Clemens J. M., 2005. "Inefficient or just different? Effects of heterogeneity on bank efficiency scores," Discussion Paper Series 2: Banking and Financial Studies 2005,15, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    15. M. Koetter, 2004. "The Stability of Efficiency Rankings when Risk-Preference are Different," Working Papers 04-08, Utrecht School of Economics.
    16. Guenter Lang, 2000. "The Impact of SMP and EMU on German Banking," Discussion Paper Series 192, Universitaet Augsburg, Institute for Economics.
    17. Brichs Serra, Elisabet & Buch, Claudia M. & Nienaber, Thomas, 1997. "The role of banks: Evidence from Germany and the US," Kiel Working Papers 802, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    18. Neuberger, Doris, 1997. "Structure, Conduct and Performance in Banking Markets," Thuenen-Series of Applied Economic Theory 12, University of Rostock, Institute of Economics.
    19. Alessio De Vincenzo & Claudio Doria & Carmelo Salleo, 2005. "The Motivations for Bank Takeovers: Some Empirical Evidence from Italy," Giornale degli Economisti, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, vol. 64(4), pages 327-358, December.
    20. Alessio De Vincenzo & Claudio Doria & Carmelo Salleo, 2006. "Efficiency vs. agency motivations for bank takeovers: some empirical evidence," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 587, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    21. Dean Amel & Colleen Barnes & Fabio Panetta & Carmelo Salleo, 2002. "Consolidation and efficiency in the financial sector: a review of the international evidence," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 464, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    22. Claessens, Stijn & Klingebiel, Daniela, 1999. "Alternative frameworks for providing financial services," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2189, The World Bank.
    23. Nicholas Apergis & Anthony Rezitis, 2004. "Cost structure, technological change, and productivity growth in the greek banking sector," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 10(1), pages 1-15, February.

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