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Production, Financial Structure and Productivity Growth in U.S. Manufacturing

  • Jeffrey I. Bernstein
  • M. Ishaq Nadiri

The purpose of this paper is to estimate a model that incorporates the effects of financial decisions on production, profitability, and productivity growth. Asymmetric information generates agency costs of debt and signaling benefits of dividends which then influence production decisions. The model is applied to the U.S. manufacturing sector. Agency costs and signaling benefits are measured by their effects on profitability. A one percent increase in debt reduces variable profit by 0.04 percent, while a one percent increase in dividends raises variable profit by 0.12 percent. Agency costs also limit the adjustment of U.S. manufacturing to long-run equilibrium. On average, for $1.00 of funds raised through bond issues, debt adjustment cost is about $0.05. The dynamic efficiency of the manufacturing sector is affected by financial considerations. Signaling benefits contribute 4.2 percent to total factor productivity growth, while agency costs reduce efficiency by 3.3 percent. Thus the financial effects on dynamic efficiency approximately offset each other.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w4309.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 4309.

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Date of creation: Mar 1993
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4309
Note: PR
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  1. Leland, Hayne E & Pyle, David H, 1977. "Informational Asymmetries, Financial Structure, and Financial Intermediation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 32(2), pages 371-87, May.
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  8. Bernstein, Jeffrey I. & Nadiri, M. Ishaq, 1988. "Corporate Taxes And Incentives And The Structure Of Production: A Selected Survey," Working Papers 88-11, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  9. Myers, Stewart C. & Majluf, Nicholas S., 1984. "Corporate financing and investment decisions when firms have information that investors do not have," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 187-221, June.
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  12. Sudipto Bhattacharya, 1979. "Imperfect Information, Dividend Policy, and "The Bird in the Hand" Fallacy," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(1), pages 259-270, Spring.
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  14. Brander, James A & Spencer, Barbara J, 1989. "Moral Hazard and Limited Liability: Implications for the Theory of the Firm," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 30(4), pages 833-49, November.
  15. Catherine J. Morrison, 1989. "Unraveling the Productivity Growth Slowdown in the U.S., Canada and Japan: The Effects of Subequilibrium, Scale Economies and Markup," NBER Working Papers 2993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. James M. Poterba & Lawrence H. Summers, 1984. "The Economic Effects of Dividend Taxation," Working papers 343, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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