IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

How Important Are Financing Constraints? The Role of Finance in the Business Environment

  • Meghana Ayyagari
  • Asli Demirgüç-Kunt
  • Vojislav Maksimovic

What role does the business environment play in promoting or restraining firm growth? Recent literature points to a number of factors as obstacles to growth. Inefficient functioning of financial markets, inadequate security and enforcement of property rights, poor provision of infrastructure, inefficient regulation and taxation, and broader governance features such as corruption and macroeconomic stability are all discussed without any comparative evidence on their ordering. Using firm-level survey data on the relative importance of different features of the business environment, the article finds that although firms report many obstacles to growth, not all the obstacles are equally constraining. Some affect firm growth only indirectly through their influence on other obstacles, or not at all. Analyses using directed acyclic graph methodology and regressions find that only obstacles related to finance, crime, and policy instability directly affect firm growth. The finance result is shown to be the most robust. The results have important implications for the priority of reforms. Maintaining policy stability, keeping crime under control, and undertaking financial sector reforms to relax financing constraints are likely to be the most effective routes to promote firm growth. Copyright The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / the world bank . All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org, Oxford University Press.

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://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/wber/lhn018
Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

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 World Bank Group in its journal The World Bank Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 22 (2008)
Issue (Month): 3 (November)
Pages: 483-516

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:oup:wbecrv:v:22:y:2008:i:3:p:483-516
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Oxford University Press, Great Clarendon Street, Oxford OX2 6DP, UK

Phone: (202) 477-1234
Fax: 01865 267 985
Web page: http://wber.oxfordjournals.org/
Email:


More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Web: http://www.oup.co.uk/journals

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. Kaufman, Daniel & Shang-Jin Wei, 1999. "Does"grease money"speed up the wheels of commerce?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2254, The World Bank.
  2. Carlin, Wendy & Fries, Steven & Schaffer, Mark E & Seabright, Paul, 2001. "Competition and Enterprise Performance in Transition Economies: Evidence from a Cross-country Survey," CEPR Discussion Papers 2840, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Kaufmann, Daniel & Batra, Geeta & Stone, Andrew H. W., 2003. "The Firms Speak: What the World Business Environment Survey Tells Us about Constraints on Private Sector Development," MPRA Paper 8213, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Haigh, Michael S. & Bessler, David A., 2002. "Causality And Price Discovery: An Application Of Directed Acyclic Graphs," Working Papers 28588, University of Maryland, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
  5. Edward L. Glaeser & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Do Institutions Cause Growth?," NBER Working Papers 10568, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Ross Levine & Norman Loayza & Thorsten Beck, 2002. "Financial Intermediation and Growth: Causality and Causes," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series, in: Leonardo Hernández & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Banking, Financial Integration, and International Crises, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 2, pages 031-084 Central Bank of Chile.
  7. Dollar, David & Hallward-Driemeier, Mary & Mengistae, Taye, 2005. "Investment Climate and Firm Performance in Developing Economies," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(1), pages 1-31, October.
  8. Ricardo Hausmann & Bailey Klinger, 2008. "Growth Diagnostics: Perú," Research Department Publications 2005, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  9. Gaviria, Alejandro, 2002. "Assessing the effects of corruption and crime on firm performance: evidence from Latin America," Emerging Markets Review, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 245-268, September.
  10. Robert G. King & Ross Levine, 1993. "Finance and Growth: Schumpeter Might Be Right," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 717-737.
  11. Friedman, Eric & Johnson, Simon & Kaufmann, Daniel & Zoido-Lobaton, Pablo, 2000. "Dodging the grabbing hand: the determinants of unofficial activity in 69 countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 459-493, June.
  12. Bessler, David A. & Yang, Jian, 2003. "The structure of interdependence in international stock markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 261-287, April.
  13. Cull, Robert & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2005. "Institutions, ownership, and finance: the determinants of profit reinvestment among Chinese firms," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 117-146, July.
  14. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2002. "Financial and legal constraints to firm growth - Does size matter?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2784, The World Bank.
  15. Simon Johnson & Todd Mitton, 2001. "Cronyism and Capital Controls: Evidence from Malaysia," NBER Working Papers 8521, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
  17. Ayyagari, Meghana & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2005. "How well do institutional theories explain firms'perceptions of property rights?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3709, The World Bank.
  18. Raghuram G. Rajan & Luigi Zingales, 1996. "Financial Dependence and Growth," NBER Working Papers 5758, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1998. "Law and Finance," Scholarly Articles 3451310, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  20. Pissarides, Francesca & Singer, Miroslav & Svejnar, Jan, 2003. "Objectives and Constraints of Entrepreneurs: Evidence from Small and Medium-Size Enterprises in Russia and Bulgaria," CEPR Discussion Papers 4142, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  21. 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, 02.
  22. La Porta, Rafael & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1997. " Legal Determinants of External Finance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(3), pages 1131-50, July.
  23. Roubini, Nouriel & Swagel, Phillip & Ozler, Sule & Alesina, Alberto, 1996. "Political Instability and Economic Growth," Scholarly Articles 4553024, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  24. Alesina, Alberto, et al, 1996. "Political Instability and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 189-211, June.
  25. Raymond Fisman & Inessa Love, 2004. "Financial Development and Intersectoral Allocation: A New Approach," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(6), pages 2785-2807, December.
  26. Benn Eifert & Alan Gelb & Vijaya Ramachandran, 2005. "Business Environment and Comparative Advantage in Africa: Evidence from the Investment Climate Data," Working Papers 56, Center for Global Development.
  27. Mihir A. Desai & C. Fritz Foley & Kristin J. Forbes, 2004. "Financial Constraints and Growth: Multinational and Local Firm Responses to Currency Crises," NBER Working Papers 10545, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Titus O. Awokuse & David A. Bessler, 2003. "Vector Autoregressions, Policy Analysis, and Directed Acyclic Graphs: An Application to the U.S. Economy," Journal of Applied Economics, Universidad del CEMA, vol. 0, pages 1-24, May.
  29. Alejandro Gaviria Uribe, 2000. "Assessing the effects of corruption and crime on firm performance," INFORMES DE INVESTIGACIÓN 002031, FEDESARROLLO.
  30. Beck, Thorsten & Levine, Ross & Loayza, Norman, 2000. "Finance and the sources of growth," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 261-300.
  31. Sleuwaegen, Leo & Goedhuys, Micheline, 2002. "Growth of firms in developing countries, evidence from Cote d'Ivoire," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 117-135, June.
  32. Daniel Kaufmann & Shang-Jin Wei, 2000. "Does 'Grease Money' Speed Up the Wheels of Commerce?," IMF Working Papers 00/64, International Monetary Fund.
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:oup:wbecrv:v:22:y:2008:i:3:p:483-516. 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: (Oxford University Press)

or (Christopher F. Baum)

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.