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  • 'Panel Data Models; Spatio-temporal Models' x
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Mr. Serhan Cevik
This paper develops a gravity model framework to estimate the impact of infectious diseases on bilateral tourism flows among 38,184 pairs of countries over the period 1995–2017. The results confirm that international tourism is adversely affected by disease risk, and the magnitude of this negative effect is statistically and economically significant. In the case of SARS, for example, a 10 percent rise in confirmed cases leads to a reduction of as much as 9 percent in tourist arrivals. Furthermore, while infectious diseases appear to have a smaller and statistically insignificant negative effect on tourism flows to advanced economies, the magnitude and statistical significance of the impact of infectious diseases are much greater in developing countries, where such diseases tend to be more prevalent and health infrastructure lags behind.
Reda Cherif, Fuad Hasanov, and Lichen Wang
We shed new light on the determinants of growth by tackling the blunt and weak instrument problems in the empirical growth literature. As an instrument for each endogenous variable, we propose average values of the same variable in neighboring countries. This method has the advantage of producing variable-specific and time-varying—namely, “sharp”—and strong instruments. We find that export sophistication is the only robust determinant of growth among standard growth determinants such as human capital, trade, financial development, and institutions. Our results suggest that other growth determinants may be important to the extent they help improve export sophistication.
Gareth Anderson and Mr. Mehdi Raissi
Productivity growth in Italy has been persistently anemic and has lagged that of the euro area over the period 1999-2015, while the indebtedness of its corporate sector has increased. Using the ORBIS firm-level database, this paper studies the long-term impact of persistent corporate-debt accumulation on the productivity growth of Italian firms and investigates whether total factor productivity growth varies with the level of corporate indebtedness. We employ a novel estimation technique proposed by Chudik, Mohaddes, Pesaran, and Raissi (2017) to account for dynamics, bi-directional feedback effects, cross-firm heterogeneity, and cross-sectional dependence arising from unobserved common factors (for example, oil price shocks, labor and product market frictions, and stance of global financial cycle). Filtering out the effects of unobserved common factors and controlling for firmspecific characteristics, we find significant negative effects of persistent corporate debt build-up on total factor productivity growth, and weak evidence of a threshold level of corporate debt, beyond which productivity growth drops off significantly. Our results have strong policy implications, for example the design of the tax system should discourage persistent corporate debt accumulation, and effective and timely frameworks to reduce corporate debt overhangs are essential.
Mr. Joshua Charap, Mr. Arthur Ribeiro da Silva, and Mr. Pedro C Rodriguez
The economic and environmental implications of energy subsidies have received renewed attention from policymakers and economists in recent years. Nevertheless there remains significant uncertainty regarding the magnitude of the impact of energy subsidies on energy consumption. In this paper we analyze a panel of cross-country data to explore the responsiveness of energy consumption to changes in energy prices and the implications of our findings for the debate on energy subsidy reform. Our findings indicate a long-term price elasticity of energy demand between -0.3 and -0.5, which suggests that countries can reap significant long-term benefits from the reform of energy subsidies. Our findings also indicate that short-term gains from subsidy reform are likely to be much smaller, which suggests the need for either a gradual approach to subsidy reform or for more generous safety nets in the short term.
Domenico Lombardi and Stephen Bond
This study tests for the presence of real options effects induced by uncertainty and (partial) irreversibility on fixed capital investment using Italian company data. The approach recognizes that firm-level investment spending may, itself, be aggregated over multiple investment decisions in separate types of capital goods and emphasizes effects of uncertainty on short-run investment dynamics. Using a survey-based measure of uncertainty related to the assessment of managers responsible for the firms' investment plans, the study finds evidence of heterogeneous and nonlinear dynamics pointing to a slower adjustment of investment in response to demand shocks at higher levels of uncertainty. The results also point to an additional source of nonlinearity originating from a convex response of investment to demand shocks.
Mr. Allan D. Brunner
This paper examines the dynamic relationship between trade and income. While most economists agree that increased trade leads to an increase in average income, economic theory is ambiguous about the possible effects on the long-run growth rate of the economy. Using a dynamic panel data model, the hypotheses of no long-run effects of trade on income and on income growth are tested explicitly. The possibility of endogeneity is addressed by constructing an instrument for trade by extending Frankel and Romer's (1999) cross-sectional approach to the case of a panel data model. The empirical results indicate that trade has a large and significant effect on the level of income, but the effect on income growth is small and non-robust to model specification.