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WIFO Working Papers

Discussion papers by WIFO staff, consultants and guests – As of 2006 available online only – Free download

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Recent issues(537 hits)

Andrea Kunnert, Bildungsstruktur der österreichischen Bevölkerung und Haushalte bis 2040

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (538), 62 pages
Die Einbeziehung von Humankapital zu Schätzung künftiger demographischer Entwicklungen gewinnt an Bedeutung, da bildungsspezifische Unterschiede in Fertilität, Mortalität und Migration die Entwicklung der Bevölkerung und somit wirtschaftliche Trends (etwa auf dem Wohnungsmarkt) wesentlich beeinflussen. In diesem Beitrag werden bildungsspezifische Unterschiede erstmals auf Ebene der Haushalte für Projektionen für Österreich bis 2040 angewandt. Aufbauend auf einer Multi-State-Bevölkerungsprognose werden mithilfe von Headship-Quoten die Haushaltsprojektionen nach höchster abgeschlossener Ausbildung berechnet. Die vier berücksichtigten Szenarien unterscheiden sich durch Annahmen zur Bildungsentwicklung der Bevölkerung (Basisszenario und Szenario mit Anstieg der höheren Ausbildung) und zu weiteren Entwicklung der Headship-Quoten (konstantes und Trendszenario). Die Zahl der Haushalte wird bis 2040 durch den anhaltenden Rückgang der Haushaltsgröße kontinuierlich wachsen. Der stärkste Anstieg ist in jenem Szenario zu erwarten, bei dem das Bildungsniveau der Bevölkerung steigt und der Trend der Haushaltsformation fortgeschrieben wird: Zwar ist der Bevölkerungszuwachs geringer als im Basisszenario, jedoch wird dies durch den Anstieg des Anteils der Bevölkerung mit Universitätsabschluss und die damit einhergehende Verringerung der Haushaltsgröße in diesem Segment kompensiert. Die Einbeziehung von Humankapital in Haushaltsprojektionen kann somit etwa zur Schätzung der künftigen Entwicklung auf dem Wohnungsmarkt eingesetzt werden.
Online since: 20.06.2017 0:00

Elisabeth Christen, Michael Pfaffermayr, Yvonne Wolfmayr, Decomposing Service Exports Adjustments along the Intensive and Extensive Margin at the Firm-Level

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (537), 37 pages
Using a panel-data set of Austrian service exporting firms this paper examines the determinants of service exports at the firm-destination country level. We implement a random-effects Heckman sample selection firm-level gravity model as well as a fixed effects Poisson model. Expected firm-level service exports are decomposed into the intensive and extensive margins of adjustment as a response to counterfactual changes. We find market demand to be the key determinant. Results also suggest high service export potentials due to regulatory reform in partner countries within the EU. Adjustments at the extensive margin only play a marginal role. Increasing firm size as well as changes in distance related costs are most effective in developing new export relationships in services.
Online since: 14.06.2017 0:00

Karin Heinschink, Franz Sinabell, Thomas Url, Elements of an Index-based Margin Insurance. An Application to Wheat Production in Austria

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (536), 16 pages
Farmers may use financial market instruments to hedge price risks. Moreover, various types of insurance products are on the market to protect against production losses. An insurance that covers losses of both input and output prices was recently introduced in the USA. We develop this concept further by proposing a prototype of an index-based margin insurance which accounts for both production risks and price risks (input and output prices). The prototype is based on standardised gross margin time series for specific activities. It accounts for revenues, variable costs by cost item, various insurance coverage levels, and gross margin. Indemnities are paid if the gross margin falls short of a determined level. We identify steps necessary to accomplish a market-ready insurance product (e.g., data validation, defining the details of the sub-indexes and the premium calculation, evaluating acceptance on the market prior to its launch). Using Austrian data, the innovative approach is exemplified with respect to different farm management practices, more specifically for the case of conventional and organic wheat production. Farmers could benefit from such a margin insurance since production and price risks would be covered in one scheme, thus reducing opportunity costs.
Online since: 29.05.2017 0:00

Peter Huber, Eva Abramuszkinová Pavlíková, Marcela Basovníková, The Impact of CSR Certification on Firm Profitability, Wages and Sales

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (535), 36 pages
We use synthetic control group methods to analyse the causal impact of CSR certification on the economic performance of a small set of Italian manufacturing firms that underwent SA8000 certification in 2009 or 2010. We find no evidence of a positive or negative impact of SA8000 certification on firm profitability and wages. The only outcome variable for which effects are positive and weakly significant in many instances are firms' turnover to assets ratios. From this we conclude that SA8000 certification has no strong impact on firm profitability and wage costs, but that it may be a viable marketing tool that increases company sales.
Online since: 22.05.2017 0:00

Harald Oberhofer, Marian Schwinner, Do Individual Salaries Depend On the Performance of the Peers? Prototype Heuristic and Wage Bargaining in the NBA

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (534), 34 pages
This paper analyses the link between relative market value of representative subsets of athletes in the National Basketball Association (NBA) and individual wages. NBA athletes are categorised with respect to multiple performance characteristics utilising the k-means algorithm to cluster observations and a group's market value is calculated by averaging real annual salaries. Employing GMM estimation techniques to a dynamic wage equation, we find a statistically significant and positive effect of one-period lagged relative market value of an athletess representative cluster on individual wages after controlling for past individual performance. This finding is consistent with the theory of prototype heuristic, introduced by Kahneman and Frederick (2002), that NBA teams' judgement about an athlete's future performance is based on a comparison of the player to a prototype group consisting of other but comparable athletes.
Online since: 09.05.2017 0:00

Matthias Firgo, Klaus Nowotny, Alexander Braun, Informal, Formal, or Both? Assessing the Drivers of Home Care Utilization in Austria Using a Simultaneous Decision Framework

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (533), 36 pages
Understanding the relation between different types of long-term care and the determinants of individual choice of long-term care types is fundamental for efficient policy making in times of ageing societies. However, empirical research on this issue has revealed both national and methodological factors as crucial for the policy conclusions drawn. Thus, the purpose of the present paper is twofold: First, at least to our knowledge, it is the first comprehensive assessment of this kind for Austria. Second, it extends the scarce literature explicitly focusing on the combined use of informal and formal care in addition to the exclusive use of these services based on an econometric framework accounting for the simultaneity and interdependencies in these types of long-term care. Our results provide strong evidence for a task-specific and complementary relation of formal and informal home care in Austria, with the health status and functional limitations as the main determinants of individual choice.
Online since: 12.04.2017 0:00

Fritz Breuss, A Macroeconomic Model of CETA's Impact on Austria

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (532), 33 pages
The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between the European Union and Canada is the most ambitious (new generation) free trade agreement the EU has ever negotiated. It is a "mixed" agreement with EU and member countries competences. Most elements of the agreement for which the EU has "exclusive competence", including the chapter on tariffs and non-tariff barriers (the dismantling of all barriers to trade in goods and services and market access to foreign direct investment) can – after the European Parliament gave its consent on 15 February 2017 – be applied provisionally in spring 2017. With a specifically constructed macroeconomic trade and growth model for Austria, we simulate the impact of CETA on Austria. CETA will add 0.3 percent to Austria's real GDP in the medium run and will stimulate bilateral trade and FDI. Our model is a small prototype model and can easily be applied to other foreign trade agreements the EU is planning. A comparison shows that TTIP – which is "politically" dead now – would have the biggest impact (real GDP +1.7 percent).The almost finished negotiated EU-Japan foreign trade agreement would result in an increase of Austria's real GDP by 0.4 percent in the medium run.
Online since: 31.03.2017 0:00

Cornelius Hirsch, Harald Oberhofer, Bilateral Trade Agreements and Trade Distortions in Agricultural Markets?

WIFO Working Papers, 2017, (531), 26 pages
Agricultural support levels are at a crossroad with reduced distortions in OECD countries and increasing support for agricultural producers in emerging economies over the last decades. This paper studies the determinants of distortions in the agricultural markets by putting a specific focus on the role of trade policy. Applying different dynamic panel data estimators and explicitly accounting for potential endogeneity of trade policy agreements, we find that an increase in the number of bilateral free trade agreements exhibits significant short- and long-run distortion reducing effects. By contrast, WTO's Uruguay Agreement on Agriculture has not been able to systematically contribute to a reduction in agriculture trade distortions. From a policy point of view our findings thus point to a lack of effectiveness of multilateral trade negotiations.
Online since: 22.02.2017 0:00

Fritz Breuss, Would DSGE Models have Predicted the Great Recession in Austria?

WIFO Working Papers, 2016, (530), 24 pages
DSGE (Dynamic stochastic general equilibrium) models are the common workhorse of modern macroeconomic theory. Whereas story-telling and policy analysis were in the forefront of applications since its inception, the forecasting perspective of DSGE models is only recently topical. In this study, we perform a post-mortem analysis of the predictive power of DSGE models in the case of Austria's recession in 2009. For this purpose, 8 DSGE models with different characteristics (small and large models, closed and open economy models, one and two-country models) were used. The initial hypothesis was that DSGE models are inferior in ex-ante forecasting a crisis. Surprisingly however, it turned out that not all but those models which implemented features of the causes of the global financial crisis (like financial frictions or interbank credit flows) could not only detect the turning point of the Austrian business cycle early in 2008 but they also succeeded in forecasting the following severe recession in 2009. In comparison, non-DSGE methods like the ex-ante forecast with the Global Economic (Macro) Model of Oxford Economics and WIFO's expert forecasts performed not better than DSGE models in the crisis.
Online since: 08.11.2016 0:00

Jürgen Janger, Torben Schubert, Petra Andries, Christian Rammer, Machteld Hoskens, The EU 2020 Innovation Indicator. A Step Forward in Measuring Innovation Outputs and Outcomes?

WIFO Working Papers, 2016, (529), 40 pages
In October 2013, the European Commission presented a new indicator intended to capture innovation outputs and outcomes and thereby "support policy-makers in establishing new or reinforced actions to remove bottlenecks that prevent innovators from translating ideas into products and services that can be successful on the market". This paper aims to evaluate the usefulness of the new indicator against the background of the difficulties in measuring innovation outputs and outcomes. We develop a unique conceptual framework for measuring innovation outcomes that distinguishes structural change and structural upgrading as two key dimensions in both manufacturing and services. We conclude that the new indicator is biased towards a somewhat narrowly defined "high-tech" understanding of innovation outcomes. We illustrate our framework proposing a broader set of outcome indicators capturing also structural upgrading. We find that the results for the modified indicator differ substantially for a number of countries, with potentially wide-ranging consequences for innovation and industrial policies.
Online since: 08.11.2016 0:00