IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

FDI, Productivity and Wages. New Evidence from a Romanian Matched Sample


  • Jude, Cristina

    () (Babes Bolyai University Cluj Napoca, Romania, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, and University of Orleans, France Laboratoire d’économie d’Orléans UMR6221.)


Governments in Central and Eastern Europe have created special incentives in order to attract FDI, based on the optimistic idea that foreign firms perform better than local ones. The recent literature sheds some doubt on the sources of productivity and wage premium, suggesting that most of the performance gap is actually due to selfselection. In the present paper we reevaluate the productivity and wage premium of foreign affiliates using a large dataset of Romanian firms, for the period 2000-2008. In order to correct for self- selection and endogeneity, we use a non-parametric econometric approach. Propensity score matching allows us to go beyond a correlation analysis and establish a causal effect of foreign ownership on performance gaps. We find that that around 40% of the productivity gap and 42% of the wage premium is due to self-selection. Once this bias removed, foreign affiliates still present 19% higher productivity and 22% higher wages compared to domestic firms. Results also confirm spillovers effects to domestic firms and show evidence of rent-sharing between foreign affiliates and their employees. We conclude that FDI do indeed have beneficial effects in the Romanian economy, though their magnitude is considerably overestimated.

Suggested Citation

  • Jude, Cristina, 2012. "FDI, Productivity and Wages. New Evidence from a Romanian Matched Sample," Journal for Economic Forecasting, Institute for Economic Forecasting, vol. 0(4), pages 36-55, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:rjr:romjef:v::y:2012:i:4:p:36-55

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Yasar, Mahmut & Morrison Paul, Catherine J., 2008. "Foreign Technology Transfer and Productivity: Evidence From a Matched Sample," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 26, pages 105-112, January.
    2. Girma, Sourafel & Gorg, Holger, 2007. "Evaluating the foreign ownership wage premium using a difference-in-differences matching approach," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 97-112, May.
    3. Damijan, Joze P. & Knell, Mark & Majcen, Boris & Rojec, Matija, 2003. "The role of FDI, R&D accumulation and trade in transferring technology to transition countries: evidence from firm panel data for eight transition countries," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 189-204, June.
    4. Christian Bellak, 2004. "How Domestic and Foreign Firms Differ and Why Does it Matter?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(4), pages 483-514, September.
    5. Bruno Merlevede & Koen Schoors, 2009. "Privatisation and foreign direct investment in 10 transition countries," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(2), pages 143-156.
    6. Jan Hagemejer & Joanna Tyrowicz, 2011. "Not All That Glitters," Eastern European Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(3), pages 89-111, May.
    7. Patrik Karpaty, 2007. "Productivity Effects of Foreign Acquisitions in Swedish Manufacturing: The FDI Productivity Issue Revisited," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(2), pages 241-260.
    8. Kristiina Huttunen, 2007. "The Effect of Foreign Acquisition on Employment and Wages: Evidence from Finnish Establishments," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(3), pages 497-509, August.
    9. James R. Markusen, 1995. "The Boundaries of Multinational Enterprises and the Theory of International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 169-189, Spring.
    10. Steven Globerman & John C. Ries & Ilan Vertinsky, 1994. "The Economic Performance of Foreign Affiliates in Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 27(1), pages 143-156, February.
    11. Conyon, Martin J, et al, 2002. "The Productivity and Wage Effects of Foreign Acquisition in the United Kingdom," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(1), pages 85-102, March.
    12. Feenstra, Robert C. & Hanson, Gordon H., 1997. "Foreign direct investment and relative wages: Evidence from Mexico's maquiladoras," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 371-393, May.
    13. Sourafel Girma & David Greenaway & Katherine Wakelin, 2002. "Does antidumping stimulate FDI? Evidence from Japanese firms in the UK," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 138(3), pages 414-436, September.
    14. Sergio Salis, 2008. "Foreign Acquisition and Firm Productivity: Evidence from Slovenia," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(8), pages 1030-1048, August.
    15. Martins, Pedro S., 2004. "Do Foreign Firms Really Pay Higher Wages? Evidence from Different Estimators," IZA Discussion Papers 1388, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    16. Yasar, Mahmut & Morrison Paul, Catherine J., 2007. "International linkages and productivity at the plant level: Foreign direct investment, exports, imports and licensing," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 373-388, April.
    17. Stepan Jurajda & Juraj Stancik, 2012. "Foreign Ownership and Corporate Performance: The Czech Republic at EU Entry," Czech Journal of Economics and Finance (Finance a uver), Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, vol. 62(4), pages 306-324, August.
    18. Javorcik, Beata Smarzynska & Spatareanu, Mariana, 2008. "To share or not to share: Does local participation matter for spillovers from foreign direct investment?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1-2), pages 194-217, February.
    19. Bruno Merlevede & Koen Schoors & Mariana Spatareanu, 2010. "FDI Spillovers and the Timing of Foreign Entry," LICOS Discussion Papers 26710, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. Dalgıç, Başak & Fazlıoğlu, Burcu & Varol İyidoğan, Pelin, 2016. "Doğrudan Yabancı Yatırımlar Kadın İstihdamını Artırır mı? Türkiye’de Hizmetler Sektörüne Yakından Bakış
      [Does Foreign Direct Investment Bring Jobs to Women? A Closer Look to Turkish Services Indust
      ," MPRA Paper 70790, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    FDI; productivity; wages; selection bias; propensity score matching;

    JEL classification:

    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance


    Access and download statistics


    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:rjr:romjef:v::y:2012:i:4:p:36-55. 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: (Corina Saman). General contact details of provider: .

    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.