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How bribery distorts firm growth : differences by firm attributes

  • Seker, Murat
  • Yang, Judy S.

How corruption affects economic performance has been studied for over a decade. Yet the lack of detailed firm-level data has limited research regarding who is carrying the real burden of corruption. This study shows that for firms in the Latin America and Caribbean region, bribery significantly distorts firm growth. Firms that pay bribes when conducting business transactions -- such as applying for permits, electricity, or water connections -- have 24 percent lower annual sales growth than firms that do not face such solicitations. Moreover, these distortions are more severe for low-revenue-generating and young firms. Using the instrumental variables method, the authors show that these results are robust to different specifications and the use of different sub-samples.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6046.

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Date of creation: 01 Apr 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6046
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  1. Reyes Aterido & Mary Hallward-Driemeier & Carmen Pag�s, 2011. "Big Constraints to Small Firms’ Growth? Business Environment and Employment Growth across Firms," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(3), pages 609 - 647.
  2. Alejandro Gaviria, 2002. "Assessing the Effects of Corruption and Crime on Firm Performance: Evidence from Latin America," INVESTIGACIÓN ECONÓMICA EN COLOMBIA 001902, FUNDACIÓN PONDO.
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  8. Francisco, Manuela & Pontara, Nicola, 2007. "Does corruption impact on firms'ability to conduct business in Mauritania ? evidence from investment climate survey data," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4439, The World Bank.
  9. Almeida, Rita K. & Fernandes, Ana Margarida, 2007. "Openness and Technological Innovations in Developing Countries: Evidence from Firm-Level Surveys," IZA Discussion Papers 2907, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  11. Dollar, David & Hallward-Driemeier, Mary & Mengistae, Taye, 2004. "Investment climate and international integration," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3323, The World Bank.
  12. Aterido, Reyes & Hallward-Driemeier, Mary, 2010. "The impact of the investment climate on employment growth : does Sub-Saharan Africa mirror other low-income regions ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5218, The World Bank.
  13. Wendy Carlin & Mark Schaffer & Paul Seabright, 2006. "Where are the Real Bottlenecks? A Lagrangian Approach to Identifying Constraints on Growth from Subjective Survey Data," CERT Discussion Papers 0604, Centre for Economic Reform and Transformation, Heriot Watt University.
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  16. Kaplan, David S. & Pathania, Vikram, 2010. "What influences firms' perceptions?," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 419-431, December.
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