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Firm-Specific Factor Market Constraints and FDI: Evidence from Germany

  • Christian Arndt

    (Institute for Applied Economic Research, IAW)

  • Claudia M. Buch

    (University of Tubingen and CESifo)

  • Anselm Mattes

    (Institute for Applied Economic Research, IAW)

Firms that invest abroad are large and more productive than their domestic counterparts. But to what extent are the international activities of firms also driven by differences across firms in terms of their access to external finance and the labor market conditions that there are facing? In this paper, we present new empirical evidence based on a detailed micro-level dataset of German firms. Our paper has three main findings regarding the firm-level determinants of FDI. First, in line with earlier literature, we find a positive impact of size, productivity, and R&D activity on firms’ FDI activity. Second, labor market conditions have a mixed impact on FDI. Personnel shortage tends to have a significantly positive impact on the probability to invest abroad, whereas wage cost problems and the existence of collective bargaining agreements have a negative effect. Third, financial constraints have a mixed impact as well. While self-reported financial constraints do not significantly affect FDI activity, cash flow has a positive impact.

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Paper provided by Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano in its series Development Working Papers with number 269.

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Date of creation: 01 Jun 2009
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Handle: RePEc:csl:devewp:269
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  1. Manishi Prasad & Peter Wahlqvist & Rich Shikiar & Ya-Chen Tina Shih, 2004. "A," PharmacoEconomics, Springer Healthcare | Adis, vol. 22(4), pages 225-244.
  2. Felbermayr, Gabriel & Prat, Julien & Schmerer, Hans-Jörg, 2008. "Globalization and Labor Market Outcomes: Wage Bargaining, Search Frictions, and Firm Heterogeneity," IZA Discussion Papers 3363, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Yeaple, Stephen & Helpman, Elhanan & Melitz, Marc, 2004. "Export versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," Scholarly Articles 3229098, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  4. Nicolas Berman & Jérôme Héricourt, 2008. "Financial Factors and the Margins of Trade: Evidence from Cross-Country Firm-Level Data," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00321632, HAL.
  5. Joel Stiebale, 2011. "Do Financial Constraints Matter for Foreign Market Entry? A Firm‐level Examination," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(1), pages 123-153, 01.
  6. Kalina Manova, 2013. "Credit Constraints, Heterogeneous Firms, and International Trade," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(2), pages 711-744.
  7. Greenaway, David & Guariglia, Alessandra & Kneller, Richard, 2007. "Financial factors and exporting decisions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 377-395, November.
  8. Jun Du & Sourafel Girma, 2007. "Finance and Firm Export in China," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(1), pages 37-54, 02.
  9. Christian Arndt & Claudia Buch & Anselm Mattes, 2009. "Barriers to Internationalization: Firm-Level Evidence from Germany," IAW Discussion Papers 52, Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung (IAW).
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