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Convergence in GDP per capita across the EU regions— spatial effects

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to offer an empirical insight into the spatial effects of growth of regional income and disparities across EU regions (NUTS 2). Since regions are spatial units and there are interrelated standard linear regression is not sufficient to evidence the convergence process. Two models (Spatial Lag Model – SLM and Spatial Error model – SEM), derived from spatial econometrics, have been used to identify and explain spatial effects in convergence clubs—all EU countries (EU-28), countries that entered the EU in 2004 (EU-13) and countries that were in EU prior to 2004 (EU-15). Unconditional and conditional β-convergence has been examined in the period 2000-2015 thus covering two financial perspectives (including n + 2 rule3). Dummy variables have been also applied to catch the country-specific effects, such as national policies, legislation, technology progress, etc.

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Cyberattacks on critical infrastructure: An economic perspective

Abstract

The aim of this article is to analyze the economic aspects of cybersecurity of critical infrastructure defined as physical or virtual systems and assets that are vital to a country’s functioning and whose incapacitation or destruction would have a debilitating impact on national, economic, military and public security. The functioning of modern states, firms and individuals increasingly relies on digital or cyber technologies and this trend has also materialized in various facets of critical infrastructure. Critical infrastructure presents a new cybersecurity area of attacks and threats that requires the attention of regulators and service providers. Deploying critical infrastructure systems without suitable cybersecurity might make them vulnerable to intrinsic failures or malicious attacks and result in serious negative consequences. In this article a fuller view of costs and losses associated with cyberattacks that includes both private and external (social) costs is proposed. An application of the cost-benefit analysis or the Return on Security Investment (ROSI) indicator is presented to evaluate the worthiness of cybersecurity efforts and analyze the costs associated with some major cyberattacks in recent years. The “Identify, Protect, Detect, Respond and Recover” (IPDRR) framework of organizing cybersecurity efforts is also proposed as well as an illustration as to how the blockchain technology could be utilized to improve security and efficiency within a critical infrastructure.

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‘Dark matter’ in the external sector of the United States

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to examine the ‘dark matter’ assets in the external sector of the United States in the period 1999:Q1-2018:Q3. The paper investigates data on the balance of payments and international investment position for the US and a group of 18 economies. The research reveals that the US is a privileged economy with respect to foreign income on international investments. The rates of return on its foreign assets are relatively higher, and the costs incurred on its foreign liabilities relatively lower, as compared with the benchmark group. This special privilege of the US relates to equity investments, especially foreign direct investments. Based on prevailing income differentials substantial ‘dark matter’ assets of the US are estimated. Recognising such ‘dark matter’ leads to the conclusion that the US is a foreign creditor, not debtor. The findings shed light on the puzzle as to why the US has a continuing ability to sustain its external position despite mounting foreign liabilities.

Open access
Exploring service quality of low-cost airlines in Europe: An integrated MCDM approach

Abstract

This study aims to evaluate service quality performance of major LCCs (Low Cost Carriers) in Europe by the MCDM (Multi-Criteria Decision Making) methodology. In addition it focuses on managerial business models and includes the international airline service providers that have applied the cost leadership strategy. In the study passenger reviews based on customer-rating systems are adopted as an alternative data source. For this purpose 24,971 passenger reviews, including 7 evaluation criteria, are analyzed. In this integrated methodology the Entropy method is used to weight the service quality criteria and the WASPAS method is used to rank the airlines. A sensitivity analysis is also applied and the robustness and stability of the application are confirmed. Consequently Jet2.com demonstrates the best service performance overall and legroom is the most important evaluation criterion.

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Lessons from TARGET2 imbalances: The case for the ECB being a lender of last resort

Abstract

During the global banking crisis of 2007-2009 and the Eurozone sovereign debt crisis of 2010-2012 the so called ‘TARGET2 imbalances’ attracted considerable attention. Some economists interpreted them as a symptom of the ECB’s ‘stealth bail-out’. The aim of the paper is to highlight that contrary to such claim, the emergence of TARGET2 imbalances reflected the benefits of having a mutual central bank within a monetary union which facilitated cross-border funding in spite of the global financial turbulence. The ECB’s liquidity loans to commercial banks in the Eurozone debtor countries shielded the Eurozone from a much deeper financial crisis than it actually occurred. The emergence of the TARGET 2 imbalances was actually only an accounting phenomenon resulting from the fact that these liquidity loans were technically extended by the debtor countries’ national central banks which are de facto (from the monetary policy perspective) ECB’s regional branches.

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Optimal growth processes in a non-stationary Gale economy with a multilane production turnpike

Abstract

The topic of the paper is relevant in the field of optimal growth theory and therefore might be seen as an intellectual underpinning for research and practice in the field of transition economies and sustainable long-time development as well. It refers to the papers Panek (2015a, 2018) devoted to asymptotic properties of optimal growth properties in the non-stationary Gale type economy with single and multi-lane turn-pikes in which it was assumed that changing production technology converges in time with certain limits of technology. As far as the postulate of a non-stationary economy (here: technology change) is consistent with real processes, the hypothesis of the existence of some limiting technology may raise controversies and be difficult to verify.

In the paper, referring to the above mentioned publications and Panek (2014), a Gale-type economy with changing technology, multi-lane turnpike and time-increasing production efficiency, with no assumption concerning the existence of a limit technology will be examined.

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A disequilibrium mechanism: When managerial decisions cause macroeconomic instability

Abstract

The paper aims to develop our understanding of the processes and mechanisms leading to economic instability. The research design and methods: the paper employs a simple game-theoretic model aimed at depicting why the mechanism connecting nonmaterial motivation of managers and the propensity of economic systems is unstable. The findings are as follows: managers, driven by the nonmaterial value of work, choose strategies that maximize the likelihood of prolonging their employment. Shortsighted CEOs may prefer strategies that offer smooth returns and an unlikely “catastrophic event.” If the unification of strategies occurs, the situation leads to a crisis and recession in the long run. The model put forth in this paper is shown to resemble the mechanism of the 2007-2008 financial crisis.

Open access
Globalization, inequality and economic policy

Abstract

In our paper a very simple model is used to analyze the relationship between trade globalization, inequality and economic policy. Although the local government exclusively maximizes the welfare of the marginalized (unemployed) people, the inequality of relative consumption between employed and unemployed will increase with intensified trade liberalization. In contrast to this result the relative income inequality may fall in certain situations.

Open access
The influence of Europeanization policies on immigrants’ participation in Scandinavian higher education

Abstract

The aim of the paper is to provide further insights into the mechanisms contributing to the integration of immigrants in higher education. Recent immigration waves into Europe place pressure on European communities; However, mass immigration is only expected to increase. The immigrants’ influence on their host countries depends on their economic performance and how well they adapt. In this regard education serves as a key component towards successful integration. As European higher education transforms the influence of these reforms on the participation rates of immigrants is of relevance. A comparison between the participation rates of immigrants following the Europeanization of the Scandinavian higher education system provides interesting insights to these issues.

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Insufficient data, short time spans, illusions and multiple pressures: designing the German Monetary Union in 1990

Abstract

The German unification in 1990 generated many benefits, but also many disappointments. After the introduction of the monetary union between the GDR and West Germany on 1 July 1990, the East German industry collapsed, and mass unemployment became persistent. Ever since the modalities of the monetary union have been discussed controversially. This paper reconstructs the decision-making processes and negotiations towards monetary union. To a high extent, this reconstruction is based on original documents. Early on in Bonn a consensus was reached that monetary union had to be introduced soon, the rapid decline of the GDR making stepwise approaches impossible. Many officials were aware of the detrimental effects of a 1:1 conversion of the wages. But few dared to go against the widespread demands for 1:1 in the GDR population and government, not the least because of over-optimistic promises before the elections in the GDR in March 1990.

Open access