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Firms' investment decisions in response to demand and price uncertainty

Listed author(s):
  • Catherine Fuss

    ()

    (National Bank of Belgium, Research Department)

  • Philip Vermeulen

    ()

    (National Bank of Belgium, Research Department)

We estimate the effect of demand and price uncertainty on firms' investment decisions from a panel of manufacturing firms. Uncertainty measures are derived from firms' subjective qualitative expectations. They are close to their theoretical counterparts, the variances of future demand and price shocks. We find that demand uncertainty depresses planned and realized investment, while price uncertainty is insignificant. This is consistent with the behavior of monopolistic firms with irreversible capital (Caballero, 1991). Further, firms revise their investment plans very little. They may do so in response to new information on sales growth, but not as a result of reduced uncertainty.

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File URL: https://www.nbb.be/doc/oc/repec/reswpp/wp45.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bank of Belgium in its series Working Paper Research with number 45.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2004
Handle: RePEc:nbb:reswpp:200404-2
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  4. Abel, Andrew B. & Eberly, Janice C., 1997. "An exact solution for the investment and value of a firm facing uncertainty, adjustment costs, and irreversibility," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(4-5), pages 831-852, May.
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  7. Stephen Bond & Julie Ann Elston & Jacques Mairesse & Benoît Mulkay, 2003. "Financial Factors and Investment in Belgium, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom: A Comparison Using Company Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(1), pages 153-165, February.
  8. Ghosal, Vivek & Loungani, Prakash, 1996. "Product Market Competition and the Impact of Price Uncertainty on Investment: Some Evidence from US Manufacturing Industries," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 217-228, June.
  9. Henley, Andrew & Carruth, Alan & Dickerson, Andy, 2003. "Industry-wide versus firm-specific uncertainty and investment: British company panel data evidence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 87-92, January.
  10. Bo, Hong, 2002. "Idiosyncratic Uncertainty and Firm Investment," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(1), pages 1-14, March.
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  21. Vivek Ghosal & Prakash Loungani, 2000. "The Differential Impact of Uncertainty on Investment in Small and Large Businesses," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(2), pages 338-343, May.
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