In this paper, we model the dynamics of business investment taking into account asset-specific characteristics potentially affecting the reactivity of aggregate and disaggregate capital accumulation over the business cycle. We estimate Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and traditional investment (non-ICT) determinants within a Vector Error Correction Model testing the assumptions of the flexible accelerator and neoclassical model as well as the role of financial constraints and uncertainty. We evaluate our model on Italian data over the period 1980–2012, and we check our results also with Spanish and UK data. Our findings support the assumption that capital is heterogeneous since short- and long-run determinants are significantly different across the assets. Traditional assets experience stock adjustment costs while ICT investment incurs flow adjustment cost. In the short run, liquidity is a key determinant of investment independently of the asset type. In the long run, uncertainty significantly affects ICT. Finally, the results of the counterfactual exercises support the idea that ICT is a key policy variable to foster economic growth.
Empirical Economics – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 19, 2017
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