How to Construct Nationally Representative Firm Level Data from the ORBIS Global Database

111 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2015

See all articles by Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan

Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan

University of Maryland - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Koc University, Graduate School of Business

Bent E. Sørensen

University of Houston - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Carolina Villegas-Sanchez

ESADE Business School

Vadym Volosovych

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)

Sevcan Yesiltas

Koc University

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: September 2015

Abstract

Firm-level data on productivity, financial activity and firms' international linkages have become essential for research in the fields of macro, international finance and growth. This paper describes the development of a firm-level global panel dataset for public and private companies based on the administrative microdataset ORBIS, provided commercially by Bureau van Dijk Electronic Publishing (BvD). The ORBIS database provides data on firms' financial and productive activities from balance sheets and income statements together with detailed information on firms' domestic and international ownership structure for over 130 million companies across the world. Researchers need to overcome several challenges before making the database usable for research. First, the database is not designed for large downloads that is essential for an econometric analysis. Second, there are several inherent biases in the database that affect the download process and lead to missing information. Third, the raw data may contain a number of irregularities which, if not dealt with, will result in data loss during a standard cleaning procedure. In combination, these issues cause minimal coverage of small firms, extensive missing data, and poor national representation. We give detailed instructions on the data gathering process from ORBIS in terms of downloading methodology and cleaning procedure so that a researcher can construct a database that is nationally representative with minimal missing information. We provide examples from several European countries to present the process and discuss the resulting dataset in detail.

Keywords: Europe, FDI, finance, firms, productivity

JEL Classification: D0, E0, F0, O0

Suggested Citation

Kalemli-Ozcan, Sebnem and Sorensen, Bent E. and Villegas-Sanchez, Carolina and Volosovych, Vadym and Yesiltas, Sevcan, How to Construct Nationally Representative Firm Level Data from the ORBIS Global Database (September 2015). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP10829, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2663407

Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan (Contact Author)

University of Maryland - Department of Economics ( email )

College Park, MD 20742
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Koc University, Graduate School of Business ( email )

Rumelifeneri Yolu
34450 Sar?yer
Istanbul, 34450
Turkey

Bent E. Sorensen

University of Houston - Department of Economics ( email )

204 McElhinney Hall
Houston, TX 77204-5882
United States
713-743-3841 (Phone)
713-743-3798 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

Carolina Villegas-Sanchez

ESADE Business School ( email )

Av. de Pedralbes, 60-62
Barcelona, 08034
Spain

Vadym Volosovych

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) ( email )

Burgemeester Oudlaan 50
Room E2-31
3000 DR Rotterdam, 3062PA
Netherlands
+31 10 408 1286 (Phone)
+31 10 408 9165 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.eur.nl/people/vadym-volosovych/

Sevcan Yesiltas

Koc University ( email )

Rumelifeneri Yolu
34450 Sar?yer
Istanbul, 34450
Turkey

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