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The Distribution and Heterogeneity of Technical Efficiency within Industries: An Empirical Assessment

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  • Michael Fritsch
  • Andreas Stephan

Abstract

This paper analyzes the distribution of technical efficiency within manufacturing industries. Using a representative sample of 35,000 firms in 255 industries of the German cost structure census, technical efficiencies are estimated by applying a deterministic frontier production function with firmspecific fixed effects. A new measure is also introduced for characterizing the extent of heterogeneity within an industry that is robust with regard to extreme values of a few small firms. It was found that the level of intra-industry heterogeneity is mainly determined by an industries' average technical efficiency, average firm size, capital intensity and the rate of new firm formation. Most strikingly, we find that in about 95 percent of industries the distribution of technical efficiency is skewed to the right, not to the left as is commonly assumed.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Fritsch & Andreas Stephan, 2004. "The Distribution and Heterogeneity of Technical Efficiency within Industries: An Empirical Assessment," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 453, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp453
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    Cited by:

    1. Kozhan, Roman, 2006. "Multiple Priors And No-Transaction Region," Working Paper Series 2006,4, European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), The Postgraduate Research Programme Capital Markets and Finance in the Enlarged Europe.
    2. Joachim Wagner, 2006. "Politikrelevante Folgerungen aus Analysen mit wirtschaftsstatistischen Einzeldaten der Amtlichen Statistik," Working Paper Series in Economics 16, University of L√ľneburg, Institute of Economics.
    3. Badunenko, Oleg & Fritsch, Michael & Stephan, Andreas, 2008. "Allocative efficiency measurement revisited--Do we really need input prices?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 1093-1109, September.
    4. Arnab Bhattacharjee & Eduardo de Castro & (Late) Chris Jensen-Butler, 2007. "Evaluating Economic Theories of Growth and Inequality: A Study of the Danish Economy," CDMA Working Paper Series 200723, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis.
    5. Jedrzej Bialkowski & Katrin Gottschalk & Tomasz Piotr Wisniewski, 2007. "Political orientation of government and stock market returns," Applied Financial Economics Letters, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 3(4), pages 269-273.
    6. Fritsch, Michael & Stephan, Andreas, 2004. "What causes cross-industry differences of technical efficiency? An empirical investigation," Freiberg Working Papers 2004,13, TU Bergakademie Freiberg, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
    7. Vigenina, Denotes & Kritikos, Alexander S., 2004. "The individual micro-lending contract: is it a better design than joint-liability?: Evidence from Georgia," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 155-176, June.
    8. Arnab Bhattacharjee & Eduardo Castro & Chris Jensen-Butler, 2009. "Regional variation in productivity: a study of the Danish economy," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 31(3), pages 195-212, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Technical efficiency; Heterogeneity; Deterministic production function frontier;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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