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The Italian Firms� International Activity

Author

Listed:
  • Riccardo Cristadoro

    (Bank of Italy)

  • Leandro D�Aurizio

    (Bank of Italy)

Abstract

We look at business survey data on Italian internationalized firms� characteristics and performances since the outbreak of the 2008 crisis until 2012. Among Italian firms with 20 employees or more, an increasing share (from 7.1 to 13.2% between 2006 and 2011) owns a foreign productive unit. The main reason for locating units in advanced countries is to be close to outlet markets, this remains true for internationalization in developing countries (where nearly half of such units were located), even though in this case the search for lower costs becomes more important. Italian multinationals are on average more productive and profitable, even when compared to exporting firms not operating abroad. More specifically, the productivity gap compared to these latter firms is 15 percent, closely aligned with that measured by Helpman at al. (2004) on a sample of US firms. Since 2008, internationalized firms� operating profit was above the average, as well as their planned expansion both in Italy and abroad. In firms� opinion, the support by Italian public institutions to expand their foreign activity is generally not effective.

Suggested Citation

  • Riccardo Cristadoro & Leandro D�Aurizio, 2015. "The Italian Firms� International Activity," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 261, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  • Handle: RePEc:bdi:opques:qef_261_15
    as

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    internationalization; competitiveness; firm performance; economic crisis;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F1 - International Economics - - Trade
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • C12 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Hypothesis Testing: General
    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models

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