Most observers expect Europe 1992 to enhance the performance of European businesses as they expand from a national to a continental scope. But there is little direct evidence to date of the potential gain in profitability at the business level. Using the PIMS Program database of 89 European continental businesses and 253 European single‐country businesses, this study attempts to provide evidence in this direction. The author finds that, in contrast to North America, European continental businesses were much less profitable than national businesses over the period 1972‐1987. This performance gap indicates the potential gain from the unified European market. This article examines the evidence and suggests some of the possible causes.
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