Small, young, and exporters: new evidence on the determinants of firm growth

This work investigates how the export status of the firm influences the patterns of growth at different age classes. We address this research question resorting to a novel set of data that links together the universe of Italian firms and detailed data on export transactions. We find that the positive relationship between ex-port status and growth declines with firm age. Further, we also find that, even when accounting for the role of age, the negative size-growth relationship does not disappear, contrary to some recent evidence. These results, which are robust to a series of controls, suggest for a positive signaling role of the export status which is stronger for young exporters or born globals. Exploiting the product-country level dimension of the customs data we also provide, for the first time, evidence on differ- ences in exchange rates pass through between young and experienced exporters. In particular, we find that early exporters appear to be well equipped to face exchange rates variations as their exports decrease less following a currency appreciation. Keywords: Firm age and performance, Firm growth, International trade, Born global, Exchange rates pass-through


Small, young, and exporters: new evidence on the determinants  of firm growth

Marco Grazzi
Department of Economics, University of Bologna

Daniele Moschella
Institute of Economics, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna

Working Paper
6/2016 February