IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/kap/sbusec/v40y2013i1p9-25.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Employment and SMEs during crises

Author

Listed:
  • Celeste Varum

    ()

  • Vera Rocha

    ()

Abstract

The persistent increasing duration of unemployment has become an issue during economic crises. Although lay-offs at large firms normally make headlines during crises, we still know little about the potential impact of firm size on adjustment behavior in a crisis. We studied effects of firm size on employment growth during economic slowdowns using a rich microeconomic database for the 1988–2007 period in Portuguese manufacturing industry. The results show that economic downturns affect firm growth negatively. This negative effect is found to be higher for larger firms, both during and immediately following crisis periods. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) emerge as potential stabilizers in downturn periods. However, larger firms seem to be able to quickly recover from downturn periods. Our results contribute to the scarce literature and to the understanding of the Portuguese case, where many SMEs secure most jobs. These first results may be useful, because SMEs play a determinant role in other European Union economies. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Celeste Varum & Vera Rocha, 2013. "Employment and SMEs during crises," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 40(1), pages 9-25, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:sbusec:v:40:y:2013:i:1:p:9-25
    DOI: 10.1007/s11187-011-9343-6
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11187-011-9343-6
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Jan Wengel & Edgard Rodriguez, 2006. "SME Export Performance in Indonesia After the Crisis," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 26(1), pages 25-37, February.
    2. Mark Gertler & Simon Gilchrist, 1994. "Monetary Policy, Business Cycles, and the Behavior of Small Manufacturing Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(2), pages 309-340.
    3. Robson, Paul J A & Bennett, Robert J, 2000. "SME Growth: The Relationship with Business Advice and External Collaboration," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 193-208.
    4. Audretsch, David B., 1995. "Innovation, growth and survival," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 441-457, December.
    5. Sato, Yuri, 2000. "How did the crisis affect small and medium-sized enterprises? -- from a field study of the metal-working industry in Java," The Developing Economies, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO), vol. 38(4), pages 572-595, December.
    6. Stearns, Timothy M. & Carter, Nancy M. & Reynolds, Paul D. & Williams, Mary L., 1995. "New firm survival: Industry, strategy, and location," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 23-42, January.
    7. Varum, Celeste Amorim & Rocha, Vera Catarina Barros, 2011. "Do foreign and domestic firms behave any different during economic slowdowns?," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 48-59, February.
    8. John Sutton, 1997. "Gibrat's Legacy," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 40-59, March.
    9. Nugent, Jeffrey B & Yhee, Seung-Jae, 2002. "Small and Medium Enterprises in Korea: Achievements, Constraints and Policy Issues," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 18(1-3), pages 85-119, Feb.- May.
    10. G Tomas M Hult & David J Ketchen & David A Griffith & Brian R Chabowski & Mary K Hamman & Bernadine Johnson Dykes & Wesley A Pollitte & S Tamer Cavusgil, 2008. "An assessment of the measurement of performance in international business research," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 39(6), pages 1064-1080, September.
    11. Albert Berry & Edgard Rodriguez & Henry Sandee, 2001. "Small And Medium Enterprise Dynamics In Indonesia," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(3), pages 363-384.
    12. Matthias Almus, 2002. "What characterizes a fast-growing firm?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(12), pages 1497-1508.
    13. Guimaraes, Paulo & Figueiredo, Octavio & Woodward, Douglas, 2000. "Agglomeration and the Location of Foreign Direct Investment in Portugal," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 115-135, January.
    14. Mercedes Teruel-Carrizosa, 2010. "Gibrat’s law and the learning process," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 34(4), pages 355-373, May.
    15. Gregory, Gary & Harvie, Charles & Lee, Hyun-Hoon, 2002. "Korean SMEs in the Wake of the Financial Crisis: Strategies, Constraints and Performance in a Global Economy," Economics Working Papers wp02-12, School of Economics, University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia.
    16. Pfaffermayr, Michael & Bellak, Christian, 2000. "Why foreign-owned firms are different: A conceptual framework and empirical evidence for Austria," HWWA Discussion Papers 115, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWA).
    17. Natália Barbosa & Helen Louri, 2005. "Corporate Performance: Does Ownership Matter? A Comparison of Foreign- and Domestic-Owned Firms in Greece and Portugal," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 27(1), pages 73-102, August.
    18. Sune Karlsson & Nannan Lundin & Fredrik Sjöholm & Ping He, 2009. "Foreign Firms and Chinese Employment," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(1), pages 178-201, January.
    19. Thorsten Beck & Asli Demirgüç‐Kunt & Vojislav Maksimovic, 2005. "Financial and Legal Constraints to Growth: Does Firm Size Matter?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(1), pages 137-177, February.
    20. Higson, C. & Holly, S. & Kattuman, P., 2002. "The cross-sectional dynamics of the US business cycle: 1950-1999," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 26(9-10), pages 1539-1555, August.
    21. I. Domac & G. Ferri, 1999. "Did the East Asian Crisis Disproportionately Hit Small Businesses in Korea?," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 28(3), pages 403-429, November.
    22. Girma, Sourafel & Gong, Yundan, 2008. "Putting people first? Chinese state-owned enterprises' adjustment to globalisation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 573-585, March.
    23. Dionisius Narjoko & Hal Hill, 2007. "Winners and Losers during a Deep Economic Crisis: Firm‐level Evidence from Indonesian Manufacturing," Asian Economic Journal, East Asian Economic Association, vol. 21(4), pages 343-368, December.
    24. Fotopoulos, Georgios & Louri, Helen, 2000. "Location and Survival of New Entry," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 14(4), pages 311-321, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Bartz, Wiebke & Winkler, Adalbert, 2016. "Flexible or fragile? The growth performance of small and young businesses during the global financial crisis — Evidence from Germany," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 196-215.
    2. Luminita Popescu & Anica Iancu & Marioara Avram & Daniel Avram & Virgil Popescu, 2020. "The Role of Managerial Skills in the Sustainable Development of SMEs in Mehedinti County, Romania," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(3), pages 1-16, February.
    3. Yannis Caloghirou & Ioannis Giotopoulos & Alexandra Kontolaimou & Aggelos Tsakanikas, 0. "Inside the black box of high-growth firms in a crisis-hit economy: corporate strategy, employee human capital and R&D capabilities," International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, Springer, vol. 0, pages 1-27.
    4. Hayoung Park & Taewon Kang & Jeong-Dong Lee, 2019. "R&D Dynamics And Firm Growth: The Importance Of R&D Persistency In The Economic Crisis," International Journal of Innovation Management (ijim), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 23(05), pages 1-24, June.
    5. A. Arrighetti & R. Brancati & A. Lasagni & A. Maresca, 2015. "Firms’ heterogeneity and performance in manufacturing during the great recession," Economics Department Working Papers 2015-EP03, Department of Economics, Parma University (Italy).
    6. Angela Triguero & David Córcoles & Maria Cuerva, 2014. "Persistence of innovation and firm’s growth: evidence from a panel of SME and large Spanish manufacturing firms," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 43(4), pages 787-804, December.
    7. Knudsen, Eirik Sjåholm, 2019. "Bad weather ahead: Pre-recession characteristics and the severity of recession impact," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 118-130.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Employment; Firm growth; SMEs; Economic slowdowns; Portugal; D21; E32; J21; L25; L60; L26;

    JEL classification:

    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance
    • L60 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - General
    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:sbusec:v:40:y:2013:i:1:p:9-25. 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: (Sonal Shukla) or (Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.