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Size and age of establishments: evidence from developing countries

  • Ayyagari, Meghana
  • Demirguc-Kunt, Asli
  • Maksimovic, Vojislav

Survey data from 120 developing countries are used to examine the relation between establishment size and age in the formal sector. Existing research suggests that manufacturing establishments in developing countries do not grow over time, most likely because of market imperfections and regulations. To the contrary, this paper finds that the average plant in developing countries that is more than 40 years old employs almost five times as many workers as the average plant that is five years old or younger. The analysis finds consistent evidence when it looks within a large country, India, based on detailed manufacturing census data over 23 years. It also finds that differences in financial development across Indian states, while substantial, have a minor effect on firm growth, consistent with inefficiency of state-owned financial systems. These results hold controlling for differences in labor regulations across states, capital intensity, labor regulations, and firms born before and after the major reforms.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6718.

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Date of creation: 01 Dec 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6718
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  8. Miriam Bruhn, 2011. "License to Sell: The Effect of Business Registration Reform on Entrepreneurial Activity in Mexico," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(1), pages 382-386, February.
  9. Ayyagari, Meghana & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2008. "Formal versus informal finance : evidence from China," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4465, The World Bank.
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  18. Rajeev Dehejia & Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2007. "Financial Development and Pathways of Growth: State Branching and Deposit Insurance Laws in the United States, 1900–1940," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 50, pages 239-272.
  19. Meghana Ayyagari & Asli Demirgüc-Kunt & Vojislav Maksimovic, 2008. "How Well Do Institutional Theories Explain Firms' Perceptions of Property Rights?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(4), pages 1833-1871, July.
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