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Book part
Publication date: 1 February 2003

Greetje Everaert and Antje Hildebrandt

Since Kornai (1980), the adverse effects of soft budget constraints have been well-documented in the literature. More recently, several theoretical explanations for the…

Abstract

Since Kornai (1980), the adverse effects of soft budget constraints have been well-documented in the literature. More recently, several theoretical explanations for the presence of soft budget constraints have been put forward. The purpose of this paper is to empirically test these theories on the causes of soft budget constraints. We therefore use a panel data set, consisting of company account data for Bulgarian and Romanian manufacturing firms, covering the period 1995–1999. Our results suggest that the probability of finding soft budget constraints importantly depends on the degree of competition within the sector and on the ownership structure of the firm. We further find that sociopolitical concerns about employment increase the probability of soft budget constraints, but only when firms are loss making. Thus, our empirical results largely confirm the hypotheses that competition, privatization, and firm size matter in explaining soft budget constraints, as is suggested in the theoretical models on the causes of soft budget constraints.

Details

Advances in the Economic Analysis of Participatory & Labor-Managed Firms
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-000-5

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Article
Publication date: 16 March 2012

Rasmus K. Storm

The purpose of this paper is to argue for the necessity of regulating European club football financially, in order to create a fair structure of sporting competition.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to argue for the necessity of regulating European club football financially, in order to create a fair structure of sporting competition.

Design/methodology/approach

By deploying the soft budget constraint approach – originally developed by Hungarian Economist János Kornai in order to understand (public) business behavior in socialist and post‐socialist economies – and combining it with empirical analysis, the paper develops an understanding of why the majority of European top league clubs are loss‐makers and why regulation is needed. The paper rests on its application of the soft budget constraint approach to build its argument and uses existing empirical research in order to support it within the field of European professional football.

Findings

The paper finds substantial evidence of soft budget constraints in professional football clubs, and argues that softness punishes the few financially well‐managed clubs in sporting terms for balancing their books.

Research limitations/implications

From a theoretical point of view, the new perspective of soft budget constraints takes political, cultural and emotional aspects into account in order to understand economic behavior among professional team sports clubs. This gives promising new insights into the discipline of sports economics and sports management.

Practical implications

The paper's findings demand action to be taken to secure financial fair play in order to deal with issues of equal sporting competition. It argues that this must be done through a central regulation scheme covering all European leagues, thus endorsing the new UEFA financial fair play program. At the same time, however, the paper recognizes the problems in implementing the program efficiently.

Originality/value

The originality and value of the paper is its application of a new theoretical approach that clarifies the problems of European professional football and the reasons why regulatory solutions are necessary to harden the budget constraints.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

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Article
Publication date: 7 January 2014

Dmitriy Chulkov

– This study aims to examine the economic factors that determine innovation pattern in centralized and decentralized economies and organizations.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to examine the economic factors that determine innovation pattern in centralized and decentralized economies and organizations.

Design/methodology/approach

Empirical evidence on innovation in the centralized economy of the Soviet Union is reviewed. Existing theoretical literature in this area relies on the incentives of decision-makers in centralized organizations and on the concept of soft budget constraint in centralized command economies and hard budget constraint in market economies. This study advocates applying the hierarchy/polyarchy model of innovation screening to explain the pattern of innovation in centralized economic systems.

Findings

Screening and development of innovation projects can be organized in a centralized or decentralized fashion. The differences in innovation between centralized and decentralized economic systems may be explained by elements of the principal-agent theory, the soft budget constraint model, and the theory of decision-making in hierarchies and polyarchies. Empirical evidence shows a sharp slowdown in both innovation and economic growth in the Soviet economy following the economic decision-making reform of 1965. The theoretical explanation most consistent with this evidence is the hierarchy decision-making model.

Originality/value

Comparisons of innovation in centralized and decentralized economies traditionally relied on decision-makers' incentives and the concept of soft budget constraint. Upon analysis of empirical evidence from the centralized Soviet economy, this study advocates explaining innovation patterns based on decision-making theory of hierarchy.

Details

Journal of Economic Studies, vol. 41 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3585

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2017

Mickael Terrien, Nicolas Scelles, Stephen Morrow, Lionel Maltese and Christophe Durand

The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, to highlight the heterogeneity of the organizational aims within the professional football teams in Ligue 1. Second, to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, to highlight the heterogeneity of the organizational aims within the professional football teams in Ligue 1. Second, to understand why some teams swing from a win orientation towards a soft budget constraint from year to year, and vice versa.

Design/methodology/approach

Financial data from annual reports for the period 2005/2015 was collected for the 35 Ligue 1 clubs. To define the degree of compliance with the intended strategy for those clubs, an efficiency analysis was conducted thanks to the data envelopment analysis method. This measure of performance was supplemented with the identification of productivity and demand shocks to identify whether clubs suffered from such shock or changed their strategy. It enables to precise the nature of the evolution in the utility function, with regards to the gap between expectation and actual performance.

Findings

The paper suggests that a team can switch from one orientation to another from year to year due to the uncertain nature of the sports industry. The club director’s utility function could also be maximized under inter temporal budget function in order to adjust the weight between win and profit according to the opportunities in the environment.

Originality/value

The paper sheds new light on the win/profit maximization. The theoretical model provides an assessment of the weight between win and profit in Ligue 1 and then identifies a new explanation for persistent losses in the sports industry.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

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Article
Publication date: 13 July 2021

Quoc Trung Tran

The purpose of this paper is to examine how state ownership influences value of cash in an institutional environment supporting soft-budget constraint.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how state ownership influences value of cash in an institutional environment supporting soft-budget constraint.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employs an interaction between state ownership and excess cash to examine how state ownership affects value of cash holdings based on Fama and French’s (1998) valuation model.

Findings

With a research data of 3,294 observations from 548 firms over the period 2009–2016, the authors find that state ownership is positively related to market value of cash. Moreover, this relationship is weaker in financially constrained firms.

Originality/value

Although prior studies document a consistently negative effect of state ownership on market value of cash holdings, the authors argue that this effect may still be opposite. When managers of high state ownership firms rely on soft-budget constraint and save less cash, outside investors with this information disadvantage may focus more on precautionary motive and transaction motive than agency costs of cash holdings. As a result, value of cash holdings in high state ownership firms is higher. This paper contributes to the literature on corporate liquidity policy in emerging markets with new evidence on the role of state ownership in market value of cash holdings.

Details

International Journal of Emerging Markets, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-8809

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Article
Publication date: 15 February 2016

Hongbin Huang, Guanghui Jin and Jingnan Chen

The purpose of this paper is to expand the investor sentiment’s effect on investment efficiency to the layer of “credit financing,” studying whether investor sentiment can…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to expand the investor sentiment’s effect on investment efficiency to the layer of “credit financing,” studying whether investor sentiment can affect credit financing level and the inner mechanism of the effect.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors obtain firm-level data from the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets and using panel estimation techniques examine whether investor sentiment can affect credit financing level and the inner mechanism of the effect.

Findings

This paper finds that credit financing plays the role of partial media in the process of investor sentiment affecting investment efficiency. Based on the funds increasing effect, with the high-investor sentiment and increasing credit financing, corporations alleviate the financing constraints, but also provide a convenient for the abuse of corporate funds. So, investor sentiment positively associates with enterprises’ overinvestment, while investor sentiment negatively associates with enterprises’ underinvestment. Relying on the particular system background and property right environment in China, this paper finds that investor sentiment has an effect on the overinvestment of state-owned enterprises and the underinvestment of private enterprises through credit financing channel, while it does not function in the overinvestment of private enterprises. The reason of the difference is that under the soft budget constraint in the country, the credit preference of state-owned enterprises and the creditor’s rights management of banks are partially absent.

Research limitations/implications

By fusing the special financial environment and institutional background, this thesis further includes in the analysis frame the difference in governance effect by credit financing between state-owned and privately owned listed companies, and further analyzes the difference in impact on investment efficiency in enterprises of different natures after investor sentiment has affected enterprise credit financing.

Practical implications

This paper has verified the constraint assumption and deepened the research work on bank credit supply and answered practical questions such as whether the banks in the country exercise supervision function over the listed companies and on which kind of listed companies the supervision function plays a more effective role.

Social implications

As an unofficial substitution mechanism, bank-enterprise relationship can elevate the investment efficiency by private owned enterprises. Based on the timely research results on credit financing, reference is provided for private listed companies to utilize investor sentiment to improve its investment efficiency.

Originality/value

This paper has proved the specific path which creates the dual effects on resources allocation by investor sentiment, that is, the intermediary transmission in credit financing, clarifying the mechanism of action by which investor sentiment affects the efficiency of enterprise investment and making incremental contribution to the research of how investor sentiment affects the efficiency of enterprise investment.

Details

China Finance Review International, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-1398

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Article
Publication date: 22 September 2020

András Bethlendi, Csaba Lentner and László Nagy

This study aims to assess the sustainability of local governments in a highly centrally regulated fiscal model.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to assess the sustainability of local governments in a highly centrally regulated fiscal model.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a novel approach, a broad data set of almost 3,200 local governments and network methods. This paper analyses financial data from annual reports and other socio-economic sources using cluster analysis.

Findings

Even in this model, local governments show significant differences in terms of long-term sustainability. Investments do not compensate for the depreciation of tangible assets at a significant part of local governments. A specific type of soft budget constraint can be noticed. Heads of local governments do not “play” for subsequent ad hoc bailouts by the central government, but rather engage themselves in political competition for development subsidies. A further finding of this study is that shrinking populations itself does not explain the differences in local governments’ financial management.

Research limitations/implications

Further directions of research include the application of an extended approach to sustainability that gives an account of the availability and quality of local services, as well as aims to identify the qualitative social characteristics (success criteria) of the local government financial management.

Practical implications

The findings can be useful for policymakers, state audit offices, auditors, voters, users of public services and other stakeholders.

Social implications

The paper argues in favour of moving away from the financial balance in its narrow sense to a long-term and broader term of financial sustainability.

Originality/value

The findings provide new empirical evidence about the accounting-based measurement of financial sustainability in local governments.

Details

Accounting Research Journal, vol. 33 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1030-9616

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Article
Publication date: 12 July 2021

Quynh Nga Nguyen Thi, Quoc Trung Tran and Hong Phat Doan

This paper investigates how the global financial crisis changes the effects of state ownership and foreign ownership on corporate cash holdings in an emerging market.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper investigates how the global financial crisis changes the effects of state ownership and foreign ownership on corporate cash holdings in an emerging market.

Design/methodology/approach

We employ an interactive term between state ownership (foreign ownership) and a crisis dummy to analyze how the global financial crisis determines the effect of state ownership (foreign ownership) on corporate cash holdings.

Findings

With a research sample including 5,493 observations from 621 listed firms over the period 2007–2017, we find that state ownership (foreign ownership) is negatively (positively) related to corporate cash holdings and the effect of state ownership (foreign ownership) is stronger (weaker) during the crisis period. Moreover, the increase in the effect of state ownership is larger in financially unconstrained firms.

Originality/value

Prior research shows that the effects of state ownership and foreign ownership on corporate cash holdings in emerging markets are still debatable. This paper extends this line of research by investigating how the global financial crisis – an exogenous shock – changes these effects.

Details

International Journal of Emerging Markets, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-8809

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Article
Publication date: 12 April 2011

István Benczes

The purpose of this paper is to present a conceptual framework in order to analyse and understand the twin developments of successful microeconomic reform on the one hand…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a conceptual framework in order to analyse and understand the twin developments of successful microeconomic reform on the one hand and failed macroeconomic stabilisation attempts on the other hand in Hungary. The case study also attempts to explore the reasons why Hungarian policymakers were willing to initiate reforms in the micro sphere, but were reluctant to initiate major changes in public finances both before and after the regime change of 1989/1990.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper applies a path‐dependent approach by carefully analysing Hungary's Communist and post‐Communist economic development. The study restricts itself to a positive analysis but normative statements can also be drawn accordingly.

Findings

The study demonstrates that the recent deteriorating economic performance of Hungary is not a recent phenomenon. By providing a path‐dependent explanation, it argues that both Communist and post‐Communist governments used the general budget as a buffer to compensate the losers of economic reforms, especially microeconomic restructuring. The gradualist success of the country – which dates back to at least 1968 – in the field of liberalisation, marketisation and privatisation was accompanied by a constant overspending in the general government.

Practical implications

Hungary has been one of the worst‐hit countries of the 2008/2009 financial crisis, not just in Central and Eastern Europe but in the whole world. The capacity and opportunity for strengthening international investors' confidence is, however, not without doubts. The current deterioration is deeply rooted in failed past macroeconomic management. The dissolution of fiscal laxity and state paternalism in a broader context requires, therefore, an all‐encompassing reform of the general government, which may trigger serious challenges to the political regime as well.

Originality/value

The study aims to show that a relatively high ratio of redistribution, a high and persistent public deficit and an accelerated indebtedness are not recent phenomena in Hungary. In fact, these trends characterised the country well before the transformation of 1989/1990, and have continued in the post‐socialist years, too. To explain such a phenomenon, the study argues that in the last couple of decades the hardening of the budget constraint of firms have come at the cost of maintaining the soft budget constraint of the state.

Details

International Journal of Emerging Markets, vol. 6 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-8809

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 1999

Nick Potts

Examines Eastern Europe’s struggle to privatise since the end of Communism; in particular reports on the experiences of Poland, Czechoslovakia and Russia. The danger of…

Abstract

Examines Eastern Europe’s struggle to privatise since the end of Communism; in particular reports on the experiences of Poland, Czechoslovakia and Russia. The danger of fast privatisation without restructuring is demonstrated by Czechoslovakia’s experience. Poland shows the importance of employing tight budget constraints. Russia demonstrates that privatisation in chaos is unlikely to produce real change.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 12 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

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