Why Does the Productivity of Investment Vary Across Countries?

PSL Quarterly Review, Vol. 70 N. 281 (September, 2017), 213-245

33 Pages Posted: 17 Jan 2018

See all articles by Kevin S. Nell

Kevin S. Nell

Universidade do Porto

A. P. Thirlwall

University of Kent - Canterbury Campus

Date Written: September 11, 2017

Abstract

In ‘new growth theory’ equations that include the investment ratio, all other variables included are determinants of the productivity of investment. We convert a ‘new growth theory’ equation into a productivity of investment equation by dividing the equation through by the investment ratio. We take a sample of 84 developed and developing countries over the period 1980 to 2011, and examine the importance of 19 potential variables that might affect the productivity of investment, using a general-to-specific model selection algorithm. Education, export growth, macroeconomic stability, political rights, geography and government expenditure turn out to be the most important determinants. There is no evidence of diminishing returns to investment, so that investment matters for long run growth.

Keywords: New Growth Theory, Investment, Productivity of Investment, Cross-Country Growth Regressions

JEL Classification: 011, 033, 047

Suggested Citation

Nell, Kevin S. and Thirlwall, A. P., Why Does the Productivity of Investment Vary Across Countries? (September 11, 2017). PSL Quarterly Review, Vol. 70 N. 281 (September, 2017), 213-245, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3100090

Kevin S. Nell

Universidade do Porto ( email )

Rua Dr. Roberto Frias
4200-464 Porto
Portugal

A. P. Thirlwall (Contact Author)

University of Kent - Canterbury Campus ( email )

Keynes College
Canterbury, Kent CT2 7NP
United Kingdom

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