EconPol Working Paper Series

Cover of EconPol Working Paper 48

Equilibrium Bitcoin Pricing

Bruno Biais ( HEC Paris), Christophe Bisière, Matthieu Bouvard, Catherine Casamatta, Albert J. Menkveld (EconPol Europe, Toulouse School of Economics, Universite Toulouse Capitole [TSM-Research])

In this working paper from Bruno Biais (HEC Paris), Christophe Bisière, Matthieu Bouvard, Catherine Casamatta and Albert J. Menkveld (EconPol Europe, Toulouse School of Economics, Universite Toulouse Capitole [TSM-Research]), the authors offer an equilibrium model of cryptocurrency pricing and confront it to new data on bitcoin transactional benefits and costs. The model emphasises that the fundamental value of the cryptocurrency is the stream of net transactional benefits it will provide, which depend on its future prices. The link between future and present prices implies that returns can exhibit large volatility, unrelated to fundamentals. They construct an index measuring the ease with which bitcoins can be used to purchase goods and services and measure costs incurred by bitcoin owners. Consistent with the model, estimated transactional net benefits explain a statistically signicant fraction of bitcoin returns.

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 47

European Structural and Investment Funds and Regional Convergence: The Impact of Public Deficit in Beta-Convergence

Carlos San Juan Mesonada and Carlos Sunyer Manteiga (EconPol Europe, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

Using realized investment data, this working paper from Carlos San Juan Mesonada and Carlos Sunyer Manteiga (EconPol Europe, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid) empirically assesses the effects of the European Structural and Investment Funds on the regional convergence of income in Spanish regions, comparing the results in terms of real regional convergence. The level of indebtedness in the region has a definite adverse effect on the effectiveness of European projects, and the authors also identify an apparent spillover effect from the funds towards other border regions.

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 46

The Size of Government

António Afonso (EconPol Europe, Universidade de Lisboa; REM/UECE), Ludger Schuknecht (OECD), Vito Tanzi (International Institute of Public Finance)

What government should do, how it should spend and how far it should intervene in the economy are the issues investigated by António Afonso (EconPol Europe, Universidade de Lisboa; REM/UECE), Ludger Schuknecht (OECD) and Vito Tanzi (International Institute of Public Finance) in this working paper. Taking a historical perspective, they assess the composition of public expenditure for advanced, emerging and developing countries and conclude that, while developing countries can struggle with providing well-functioning services, governments are increasingly demonstrating that progress is feasible.

 

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 45

Labor Productivity in State-Owned Enterprises

António Afonso (EconPol Europe, Universidade de Lisboa; REM/UECE), Maria João Guedes(Universidade de Lisboa; Advance/CSG), Pankaj C. Patel (Villanova University, Villanova School of Business)

Between 2013 and 2015, in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, the Portuguese government revoked four holidays for public and private employees - but the revocation seems to have served little economic purpose and been no more than a ceremonial gesture. In this paper, authors António Afonso (EconPol Europe, Universidade de Lisboa; REM/UECE), Maria João Guedes (Universidade de Lisboa; Advance/CSG), Pankaj C. Patel (Villanova University, Villanova School of Business) show that revocation of the holidays did not impact labor productivity for either central or local and regional government managed state owned enterprises.

 

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 44

Markups in a Dual Labor Market: The Case of the Netherlands

Gerrit Hugo van Heuvelen, Leon Bettendorf, Gerdien Meijerink (EconPol Europe, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis)

An expanding body of research finds a sharp increase in the average markups in the US and Europe, driven by firms located at the top of the markup distribution; other studies find that markups in the US and Europe have increased only moderately or even remained stable. These differing results have triggered a discussion on methodology, a key issue being the choice of the free input in the production function approach. Authors Gerrit Hugo van Heuvelen, Leon Bettendor and Gerdien Meijerink (EconPol Europe, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis) show that the choice of the free input is crucial, and may explain at least some of the discrepancies in the findings in the recent literature. They illustrate this with the case of the Netherlands, which has a large share of flexible work arrangements and temporary labor contracts as well as fixed contracts.

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