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Into the Allocation Puzzle - A Sectoral Analysis

This paper assesses whether the allocation puzzle - the tendency for capital to flow to countries with relatively low productivity growth - is observed for foreign direct investment (FDI) flows, which should be particularly sensitive to productivity prospects. We look both at aggregate FDI flows and, using a new data set, at FDI flows into the main economic sectors. We make three points. First, we do not find evidence of an allocation puzzle for aggregate FDI flows. Second, we refine the aggregate result and document substantial sectoral heterogeneity. An allocation puzzle is observed in the agriculture, construction, mining/petroleum/utilities and tourism sector. By contrast, we show that countries with faster productivity growth in manufacturing attract more investment in that sector. The link is even stronger for service sectors. Third, we document a role for financial openness: a country with fast productivity growth draws in more FDI into its service sectors only when it is financially open. We conclude with a discussion of some tentative explanations for the results.

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Paper provided by Swiss National Bank, Study Center Gerzensee in its series Working Papers with number 10.02.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:szg:worpap:1002
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  1. Gourinchas, Pierre-Olivier & Jeanne, Olivier, 2007. "Capital Flows to Developing Countries: The Allocation Puzzle," CEPR Discussion Papers 6561, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Eduardo Levy Yeyati & Ugo Panizza & Ernesto H. Stein, 2003. "The Cyclical Nature of North-South FDI Flows," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 6502, Inter-American Development Bank.
  3. Alfaro, Laura & Chanda, Areendam & Kalemli-Ozcan, Sebnem & Sayek, Selin, 2004. "FDI and economic growth: the role of local financial markets," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 89-112, October.
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  11. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
  12. Oved Yosha & Bent E. Sorensen & Ariell Reshef & Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan, 2007. "Why Does Capital Flow to Rich States?," 2007 Meeting Papers 828, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Smarzynska, Beata K., 2002. "Does foreign direct investment increase the productivity of domestic firms : in search of spillovers through backward linkages," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2923, The World Bank.
  14. Dierk Herzer & Stephan Klasen & Felicitas Nowak-Lehmann D., 2006. "In search of FDI-led growth in developing countries," Ibero America Institute for Econ. Research (IAI) Discussion Papers 150, Ibero-America Institute for Economic Research.
  15. Francesco Caselli & James Feyrer, 2007. "The Marginal Product of Capital," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(2), pages 535-568.
  16. Laura Alfaro & Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan, 2004. "Why doesn't capital flow from rich to poor countries? An empirical investigation," 2004 Meeting Papers 53, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  17. V N Balasubramanyam & M Salisu & David Sapsford., . "Foreign Direct Investment and Growth in EP and IS Countries," Working Papers ec18/94, Department of Economics, University of Lancaster.
  18. Robert E. Lipsey, 2002. "Home and Host Country Effects of FDI," NBER Working Papers 9293, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Mark Aguiar & Manuel Amador, 2009. "Growth in the Shadow of Expropriation," Discussion Papers 08-051, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  20. Ricardo J. Caballero & Emmanuel Farhi & Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, 2008. "An Equilibrium Model of "Global Imbalances" and Low Interest Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 358-93, March.
  21. Menzie D. Chinn & Eswar S. Prasad, 2000. "Medium-Term Determinants of Current Accounts in Industrial and Developing Countries: An Empirical Exploration," NBER Working Papers 7581, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Feldstein, Martin & Horioka, Charles, 1980. "Domestic Saving and International Capital Flows," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(358), pages 314-29, June.
  23. Christopher D. Carroll & Olivier Jeanne, 2009. "A Tractable Model of Precautionary Reserves, Net Foreign Assets, or Sovereign Wealth Funds," Working Paper Series WP09-10, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  24. Damiano Sandri, 2014. "Growth and Capital Flows with Risky Entrepreneurship," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 102-23, July.
  25. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1990. "Why Doesn't Capital Flow from Rich to Poor Countries?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 92-96, May.
  26. Borensztein, E. & De Gregorio, J. & Lee, J-W., 1998. "How does foreign direct investment affect economic growth?1," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 115-135, June.
  27. Herzer, Dierk & Klasen, Stephan & Nowak-Lehmann D., Felicitas, 2008. "In search of FDI-led growth in developing countries: The way forward," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 793-810, September.
  28. Martin Schindler, 2009. "Measuring Financial Integration: A New Data Set," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 56(1), pages 222-238, April.
  29. Görg, Holger & Greenaway, David, 2003. "Much Ado About Nothing? Do Domestic Firms Really Benefit from Foreign Direct Investment?," IZA Discussion Papers 944, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  30. Francisco J. Buera & Yongseok Shin, 2009. "Productivity Growth and Capital Flows: The Dynamics of Reforms," NBER Working Papers 15268, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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