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Disentangling the firm growth process: evidence from a recursive panel VAR

  • Alexander Coad

We attempt to describe the coevolution of employment growth, sales growth and growth of profits in a panel of French manufacturing firms 1996-2004. Our analysis entails ‘recursive’ panel vector autoregressions, whereby we impose the structure of employment growth leading to contemporaneous sales growth, which in turn is associated with contemporaneous growth of profits. We observe that whilst employment growth has a direct negative association with profit growth, there are indirect effects through which employment growth leads to sales growth which in turn has a large effect on profits growth. The net effect of employment growth is thus positive growth of profits. Counter to some ‘replicator dynamics’ theories of industrial development, profit growth is not followed by much subsequent growth of employment.

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Paper provided by Philipps University Marburg, Department of Geography in its series Papers on Economics and Evolution with number 2007-15.

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Date of creation: Nov 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:esi:evopap:2007-15
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  1. Blundell, Richard & Bond, Stephen, 1998. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 115-143, August.
  2. Delmar, Frederic & Davidsson, Per & Gartner, William B., 2003. "Arriving at the high-growth firm," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 189-216, March.
  3. Pavitt, Keith, 1984. "Sectoral patterns of technical change: Towards a taxonomy and a theory," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 13(6), pages 343-373, December.
  4. Michael Binder, Cheng Hsiao, and M. Hashem Pesaran, 2001. "Estimation and Inference in Short Panel Vector Autoregressions with Unit Roots and Cointegration," Computing in Economics and Finance 2001 36, Society for Computational Economics.
  5. Alexander Coad & Rekha Rao, 2007. "Firm Growth and R&D Expenditure," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2007-10, Philipps University Marburg, Department of Geography.
  6. Steve Bond, 2002. "Dynamic panel data models: a guide to microdata methods and practice," CeMMAP working papers CWP09/02, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  7. Giulio Bottazzi & Alex Coad & Nadia Jacoby & Angelo Secchi, 2005. "Corporate Growth and Industrial Dynamics: Evidence from French Manufacturing," LEM Papers Series 2005/21, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
  8. Stanca, Luca & Gallegati, Mauro, 1999. "The Dynamic Relation between Financial Positions and Investment: Evidence from Company Account Data," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 8(3), pages 551-72, September.
  9. Michael P. Murray, 2006. "Avoiding Invalid Instruments and Coping with Weak Instruments," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(4), pages 111-132, Fall.
  10. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2001. "Vector Autoregressions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(4), pages 101-115, Fall.
  11. Coad, Alex, 2007. "Testing the principle of `growth of the fitter': The relationship between profits and firm growth," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 370-386, September.
  12. Alex Coad, 2007. "A Closer Look at Serial Growth Rate Correlation," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 31(1), pages 69-82, August.
  13. Alex Coad, 2007. "Firm growth : a survey," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne r07024, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
  14. Nickell, Stephen J, 1981. "Biases in Dynamic Models with Fixed Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1417-26, November.
  15. Alex Coad, 2007. "Exploring the "mechanics" of firm growth : evidence from a short-panel VAR," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne r07037, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
  16. Love, Inessa & Zicchino, Lea, 2006. "Financial development and dynamic investment behavior: Evidence from panel VAR," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 190-210, May.
  17. Geroski, Paul A, 1999. "The Growth of Firms in Theory and in Practice," CEPR Discussion Papers 2092, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Metcalfe, J S, 1994. "Competition, Fisher's Principle and Increasing Returns in the Selection Process," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 4(4), pages 327-46, November.
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