This paper identifies a new mechanism leading to inefficiency in capital reallocation at the extensive margin when an economy experiences a sectoral boom. I argue that imperfections in the financial market and capital barriers to entry in the booming sector create a misallocation of managerial talent. Using comprehensive firm-level data from China, I first provide evidence that more productive firms reallocate capital to the booming real estate sector, and demonstrate that the pattern is likely driven by fewer financial constraints on these firms. I then use a structural estimation to verify the talent misallocation. Finally, I calibrate a dynamic model and find that the without the misallocation, the TFP growth in the manufacturing sector would have improved by 0.5% per year.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This Selected Issues paper on United States 2012 Article IV Consultation discusses rebound of manufacturing production. The U.S. share in global manufacturing production declined through most of the past three decades, but it has stabilized since the Great Recession. It currently represents about 20 percent of global manufacturing value added. Interestingly, after a sharp increase during most of the previous decade, China’s share in global manufacturing has also stabilized since the Great Recession, at a level similar to that of the United States. The notion of a manufacturing renaissance has been fuelled partly by the rebound in production since the end of the Great Recession.
Investment has grown rapidly in China in recent years, reaching more than 40 percent of GDP. Despite good progress on bank and enterprise reforms, weaknesses remain that could contribute to inefficient investment decisions. Manufacturing, infrastructure, and real estate have been the drivers of fixed asset investment. Econometric analysis presented in the paper suggests that manufacturing investment is strongly correlated with firms' liquidity, largely retained earnings. Analysis of residential real estate investment shows that it is weakly correlated with real household income growth and real mortgage interest rates. A policy implication of these findings is that reducing liquidity in firms, for example by requiring state-owned enterprises to pay dividends to the government, and using monetary policy to reduce liquidity increase real interest rates, would slow investment in manufacturing and real estate.