Challenges of Contemporary Economics


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Volume 13 (2019) Volume 12 (2018) Volume 11 (2017) Volume 10 (2016) Volume 9 (2015) Volume 8 (2014) Volume 7 (2013) Volume 6 (2012) Volume 5 (2011) Volume 4 (2010) Volume 3 (2009) Volume 2 (2008) Volume 1 (2007)

Volume 6 Issue 1 (2012)

The Impact of Technological and Structural Changes in the National Economy on the Labour-Capital Relations original article

pp. 4-12 | First published in 29 March 2012 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.31

Małgorzata Gawrycka, Aneta Sobiechowska-Ziegert, Anna Szymczak


The aim of the research presented in this paper is to show the relations between labour and capital in the national economy, resulting from technological and structural changes taking place in the years 1991 to 2008 and to indicate of their importance for economic growth.The paper presents the functional determinants for the Polish economy in 1991-2008 affecting the phenomenon subject to study as well as the preliminary analysis of relations between capital and labour and their impact on the GDP. In the research the econometric methods of description and inference based on the concept of macroeconomic Cobb-Douglas production function in both static and dynamic approach were used. The study shows that increase in production in the national economy was largely the result of capital growth during the analysed period. The main factor of economic growth however in the years 1998 to 2008 was the technological progress. The results may be the implication for economic policy in terms of investment and employment.

Keywords: transformation, structural changes, employment, capital, national economy, macroeconomic production function

Corporate Governance and Pension Fund Performance original article

pp. 14-44 | First published in 29 March 2012 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.32

Oskar Kowalewski


This study provides new evidence on the impact of governance on the performance of privately defined contribution pension plans. Using a hand collected data set on governance factors, the study shows that the external and internal governance mechanisms in pension plans are weak. One explanation for this weakness is the potential conflict between the pension beneficiaries and the fund’s owner, which depends on who bears the investment risk in the pension plan. Hence, different governance factors are found to be important for pension fund return on invested assets and also for its economic performance. Consequently, the overall policy conclusion is that more focus should be put on the governance of the pension funds, taking into account the different interests of the beneficiaries and owners as it may determine their performance.

Keywords: pension funds, corporate governance, agency theory, performance

Differences in the Level and Structure of Household Indebtedness in the EU Countries original article

pp. 46-59 | First published in 31 March 2012 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.33

Paulina Anioła, Zbigniew Gołaś


The article presents the outcomes of dynamic, cross-section analysis of the differences in the level and structure of household indebtedness in EU countries and the range of problems with debt service between 2005 and 2009. Statistical data from of the EU Commission, obtained in the periodic research of people’s incomes and living conditions (EU-SILC) and the ECRI - European Credit Research Institute, was used in the research, as well as the method of multi-dimensional analysis (cluster analysis and k-means method), enabling to classify EU households according to the features of their indebtedness. Moreover, in order to define the quantitative relationships between the level and structure of households’ indebtedness and the frequency of repayment problems, tools such as correlation analysis and stepwise regression, enabling the description of its strength and direction of influence of selected variables on repayment problems.

Keywords: indebtedness, debt structure, repayment problems, households, European Union

Macroeconomic Forecasts in Models with Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimates original article

pp. 60-69 | First published in 31 March 2012 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.34

Piotr Białowolski, Tomasz Kuszewski, Bartosz Witkowski


The aim of this paper is to construct a forecasting model oriented on predicting basic macroeconomic variables, namely: the GDP growth rate, the unemployment rate, and the consumer price inflation. In order to select the set of the best regressors, Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimators (BACE) is employed. The models are atheoretical (i.e. they do not reflect causal relationships postulated by the macroeconomic theory) and the role of regressors is played by business and consumer tendency survey-based indicators. Additionally, survey-based indicators are included with a lag that enables to forecast the variables of interest (GDP, unemployment, and inflation) for the four forthcoming quarters without the need to make any additional assumptions concerning the values of predictor variables in the forecast period.  Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimators is a method allowing for full and controlled overview of all econometric models which can be obtained out of a particular set of regressors. In this paper authors describe the method of generating a family of econometric models and the procedure for selection of a final forecasting model. Verification of the procedure is performed by means of out-of-sample forecasts of main economic variables for the quarters of 2011. The accuracy of the forecasts implies that there is still a need to search for new solutions in the atheoretical modelling.

Keywords: Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimates, business survey data, seasonality, automatic forecasting

New Approach to Remuneration Policy for Investment Firms: a Polish Capital Market Perspective original article

pp. 70-77 | First published in 31 March 2012 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.35

Szymon Okoń


The experience of the recent financial crisis leads to reflections on the relevant mechanisms of risk reduction of an investment firms activity. Within the European Union, the Directive 2010/76/EU (CRD III) has introduced new rules regarding the remuneration policy for investment firms. The main goal was to reduce the risk of investment firms’ activity. This is a prudential regulation. The purpose of this article is to evaluate, from the point of view of an investment firm, proposed by the EU legislator approach to remuneration policy aimed at reducing the risk of the operation of this type of financial institutions. The aim was to identify the key problems with which Polish investment firms may face in the future in connection with new remuneration policy rules. As far as the methodology is concerned, the author carried out in-depth and standardized interviews with the representatives of several investment firms in Poland. In addition, the method of observation has been applied. The results of the research demonstrates that the abovementioned regulations will have limited impact on reducing the risk of the activities of these financial institutions as well as their implementation will be difficult for them in practice.

Keywords: remuneration policy, investment firms, capital markets supervision

Chosen Tax-Related and Economic Aspects of Choosing the Method of Equity Financing in Relation to Thin Capitalisation in the Countries of OECD original article

pp. 78-85 | First published in 31 March 2012 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.36

Dominik Gajewski


The present publication is concerned with the process of thin capitalisation in the countries of OECD. Two methods for financing companies are discerned in relation to this phenomenon, i.e. debt and equity financing. The tax-related consequences of the method of equity financing of companies are assessed against thin capitalisation. It is the very tax policy of companies that has a direct influence on the economic consequences of the functioning of these companies. The process of taxation of the phenomenon of thin capitalisation may be highly varied depending on the adopted method. Tax-related consequences demonstrate how complicated this process is irrespective of the country in which it takes place. The issue is even more complicated in the case of taxation of this process in companies conducting cross-border activity.

Keywords: corporate income tax, thin capitalisation, OECD

Punishment as a Price to Pay original article

pp. 86-97 | First published in 31 March 2012 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.37

Ch’ng Kean Siang


Management meted out punishment to enforce rules and encourage adherence.  However, the effectiveness depended on how the employees perceive and interpret the policy.  Therefore, it was uncertain how to best achieve the target.  The paper tested employees’ behavioral responses in two conditions, 1) when employees had to pay fines to employer and 2) when employees had to pay fines to co-workers.  Condition one was a typical deterrence policy implemented to punish misconduct in an organization, and condition two tested the behavioral responses to distributive outcomes.  Questionnaire was distributed to these employees to investigate perception.  The experimental results indicated that employees responded differently to the two conditions, misconduct was significantly reduced in condition two but not in condition one.  While employees agreed that the implementation was fair in the two conditions, they did not agree on the punishment outcomes in condition two. The employees perceived paying fines to employer was more acceptable than paying fines to co-workers.  Accounting for social norms in the implementation was more successful than formal deterrence.

Keywords: Punishment; Deterrence; Lateness; Field Experiment; Decision