Browsing by Subject " economics"

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  • Lappi, Juha; Siitonen, Markku (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1985)
  • Omwami, Raymond K. (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1988)
    A study aimed at applying concepts of economic theory relevant to the formulation of a long-term timber production model as a basis of forest policy. A vertically integrated forest sector production model is described, together with its application in a developing economy and the derivation of a dynamic silvicultural investment criterion (in a labour surplus economy).
  • Mykkänen, Reijo (The Society of Forestry in Finland - The Finnish Forest Research Institute, 1994)
    The study presents a theory of utility models based on aspiration levels, as well as the application of this theory to the planning of timber flow economics. The first part of the study comprises a derivation of the utility-theoretic basis for the application of aspiration levels. Two basic models are dealt with: the additive and the multiplicative. Applied here solely for partial utility functions, aspiration and reservation levels are interpreted as defining piecewisely linear functions. The standpoint of the choices of the decision-maker is emphasized by the use of indifference curves. The second part of the study introduces a model for the management of timber flows. The model is based on the assumption that the decision-maker is willing to specify a shape of income flow which is different from that of the capital-theoretic optimum. The utility model comprises four aspiration-based compound utility functions. The theory and the flow model are tested numerically by computations covering three forest holdings. The results show that the additive model is sensitive even to slight changes in relative importances and aspiration levels. This applies particularly to nearly linear production possibility boundaries of monetary variables. The multiplicative model, on the other hand, is stable because it generates strictly convex indifference curves. Due to a higher marginal rate of substitution, the multiplicative model implies a stronger dependence on forest management than the additive function. For income trajectory optimization, a method utilizing an income trajectory index is more efficient than one based on the use of aspiration levels per management period. Smooth trajectories can be attained by squaring the deviations of the feasible trajectories from the desired one.
  • Keipi, Kari (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1980)
  • Zheng, Yi (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    This thesis discusses competition and coordination in the market. On the supply side, firms decide optimal competing strategies in pricing while considering corporate social responsibility. On the demand side, on one hand, consumers can act selfishly without considering social norms. On the other hand, consumers can coordinate so that better outcomes can be achieved: for example, a reduction in market inefficiency or an improvement in welfare. I analyze the relationship between the demand and supply sides, and study how the preference and behaviour of one side can affect the other. I then discuss the incentives of both firms and consumers, either competitive, non-cooperative or coordinative. This thesis consists of four articles. The first article points out a new cause of market inefficiency in competitive markets. I propose a coordinative solution to the problem. I show that the market clears if consumers coordinate in a certain way and, therefore, confirm the value of coordination in competitive markets. The second article studies the role of socially responsible actions in a lobbying game. Firms' investment in corporate social responsibility, for example, on environmental protection or animal rights, is proved to be a strategic action that effectively reduces lobbying costs and improves welfare. The other two articles study boycotts. I examine how consumers' behaviour that is driven by environmental concerns can jointly cause a change in firms' behaviour towards more socially responsible actions, and how firms choose their best reactions to deal with boycotts.
  • Vehkamäki, Seppo (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1986)
  • Riihinen, Päiviö (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1963)
  • Lof, Matthijs (Helsingin yliopisto, 2013)
    The way in which market participants form expectations affects the dynamic properties of financial asset prices and therefore the appropriateness of different econometric tools used for empirical asset pricing. In addition to standard rational expectations models, this thesis studies a class of models in which boundedly rational agents may switch between various simple expectation rules. A well-known specific example features fundamentalists, who target the fundamental value of the asset, and chartists, who try to exploit recent trends in price movements. A crucial feature of these models is that not all agents have to follow the same expectation rule, but are allowed to form heterogeneous beliefs. Chapters 2 and 3 present empirical estimations of two specific heterogeneous agent models. Since the data generating processes are assumed to be nonlinear, due to the agents' switching between expectation rules, nonlinear regression models are applied. By framing the empirical results in a heterogeneous agent framework, these chapters provide an alternative view on important topics in asset pricing, such as the prevalence of excess volatility and the relation between financial markets and the macro-economy. The final two chapters deal with noncausal, or forward-looking, autoregressive models. Chapter 4 shows that US stock prices are better described by noncausal autoregressions than by their causal counterparts. This implies that agents' expectations are not revealed to an outside observer such as an econometrician observing only realized market data. Simulation results show that heterogeneous agent models are able to generate noncausal asset prices. Chapter 5 considers the estimation of a class of standard rational expectations models. It is shown that noncausality of the instrumental variables does not have an impact on the consistency of the generalized method of moments (GMM) estimator, as long as agents form rational expectations.
  • Koev, Evgenii (Eugen) (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    The dissertation consists of an introduction and three esssays. Each essay focuses on certain specific empirical and methodological questions in the field of economics of gender and gender inequality. The first essay investigates the association between feminization and returns of Finnish master's degree-programs. Results from a panel data model show that, for graduates from master's degree programs in Finland, during the period between 1987 and 2017, a systematic positive association existed between the programs' female share changes and the income changes of its graduates. I discuss two mechanisms that could explain the result. On the other hand, repeated cross-section analysis suggests that the return on markedly feminine degree programs has further deteriorated. This finding requires further investigation but is likely to be linked to the role of public sector employment for graduates from these programs, public sector budget constraints, and the public sector's role in determining the supply of university education in Finland. The second essay is a methodological contribution to the so-called Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition, which is at the heart of empirical gender wage gap research. I show that part of the categorical variable's wage-structure difference effect in the detailed Oaxaca-Blinder gender wage gap decomposition is identified without coefficient restrictions or other additional assumptions. The finding means that the wage gap contribution of each categorical variable that affects wages can be evaluated more comprehensively than has been thought up to now. Empirical results showed that in the Finnish private sector, between 28 and 35 per cent of the gender wage gap in 1995 and between 15 and 25 per cent in 2013 is accounted for by wage-structure differences traceable to specific variables. In the third essay, I study the importance of the firm-specific wage components for the gender wage gap in private sector blue-collar occupations in Finland. It turned out that firm-specific wage premiums differ both by gender and by gender dominance of the occupation. Firm-specific factors account for 1/3 of the gender wage gap in female-dominated blue-collar occupations. For male-dominated blue-collar occupations, the results are somewhat inconclusive, but firm factors may be a much less important source of the gender wage gap in this group. I contribute to the method used in this type of study in two ways. Firstly, in the empirical analysis, I use the fact that the gender wage gap effect arising from within-firm differences in male and female wage premiums (the bargaining effect) is partly identified directly from the wage model. Under plausible assumptions, this effect is a lower bound of the full bargaining effect. Secondly, I also quantify the uncertainty associated with identifying the full bargaining effect. This uncertainty is high for male-dominated blue-collar occupations in the data.
  • Khondker, Aktaruzzaman (Department of Economics, Faculty of Social Sciences, 2009)
    This thesis is a collection of three essays on Bangladeshi microcredit. One of the essays examines the effect of microcredit on the cost of crime. The other two analyze the functioning mechanism of microcredit programs, i.e. credit allocation rules and credit recovery policy. In Essay 1, the demand for microcredit and its allocation rules is studied. Microcredit is claimed to be the most effective means of supplying credit to the poorest of the poor in rural Bangladesh. This fact has not yet been examined among households who demand microcredit. The results of this essay show that educated households are more likely to demand microcredit and its demand does not differ by sex. The results also show that microcredit programs follow different credit allocation rules for male and female applicants. Education is an essential characteristic for both sexes that credit programs consider in allocating credit. In Essay 2, the focus is to establish a link between microcredit and the incidence of rural crime in Bangladesh. The basic hypothesis is that microcredit programs jointly hold the group responsibility which provides an incentive for group members to protect each other from criminal gang in order to safeguard their own economic interests. The key finding of this essay is that the average cost of crime for non-borrowers is higher than that for borrowers. In particular, 10% increase in the credit reduces the costs of crime by 4.2%. The third essay analyzes the reasons of high repayment rate amid Bangladeshi microcredit programs. The existing literature argues that credit applicants are able to screen out the high risk applicants in the group formulation stage using their superior local information. In addition, due to the joint liability mechanism of the programs, group members monitor each others economic activities to ensure the minimal misuse of credit. The arguments in the literature are based on the assumption that once the credit is provided, credit programs have no further role in ensuring that repayments are honored by the group. In contrast, using survey data this essay documents that credit programs use in addition organizational pressures such as humiliation and harassment the non-payer to recover the unpaid installments. The results also show that the group mechanisms do not have a significant effect in recovering default dues.
  • Riihinen, Päiviö (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1981)
  • Saxell, Tanja (Helsingin yliopisto, 2014)
    This thesis consists of three essays on the industrial organization of pharmaceutical markets. In Chapter 1, I introduce the three essays and present the main results. In Chapter 2, I measure how uncertainty and learning through experimentation affect the medical decision-making by physicians. I estimate a dynamic model of demand where physicians may learn the effectiveness or side effects of drug treatments from their prescription experiences. In the model, physicians may want experiment new drugs for their patients to get valuable information for their future drug choices. At the same time, risk aversion can make physicians reluctant to try less well-known, but potentially superior products for their patients. Using data from the Finnish market for cholesterol drugs, I find that medical decision-making is characterized by habit persistence and heterogeneity in the effectiveness of drug treatments across patients. My results suggest that if physicians would become more willing to experiment with their treatment choices, the process of learning would improve and the efficiency of medical decision-making would increase. In Chapter 3, I quantify the roles of the physician's own experience and the past choices of other doctors in pharmaceutical demand. I develop a model of medical decision-making under uncertainty about the quality of the match between the patient and the drug treatment. Unlike previous demand models, I take into account both private and social learning and allow heterogeneity in quality across patients. I test whether information on the past choices of other physicians improves drug choices. Using rich data from the market for cholesterol drugs, I show that treatment patterns relying heavily on the past choices of other doctors can lead to over-prescription in terms of efficiency. My results suggest that continuity of care, where a patient repeatedly consulting the same doctor, is an efficient policy to limit such behavior. Finally, in Chapter 4, I explore whether stronger patents decrease competition during patent protection. Traditionally, stronger patents have been thought to increase the profits of an innovator and to promote R&D. Economic theory predicts that longer patents may hinder rather than stimulate innovation by increasing competition during the patent period. Broad patents, on the other hand, increase the costs of imitation and decrease competition. I test the theory on the relationship between patent strength and competition during patent protection. I consider the Finnish markets for pharmaceuticals that provide rich variation in both patent length and breadth across innovations. The results suggest that patent breadth, rather than length, prevents imitation. Patent rights have no effect on the risk of parallel trade.
  • Koljonen, Kauko (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1983)
  • Haltia, Olli; Simula, Markku (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1988)
  • Hakala, Herman (The Society of Forestry in Finland - The Finnish Forest Research Institute, 1992)
    The influence was examined of log characteristics (diameter, length, taper, volume, density and quality), sawing pattern, yield, sawing efficacy, stoppages and consumption of electricity on the profitability of sawing pine [Pinus sylvestris] logs. The costs (raw material, capital, labour, energy and other) and revenues (sawn timber, chips, sawdust and bark) were also studied. The study was based on tests using conventional sawing patterns of 1606 logs at the Teuva sawmill (owned by Botnia Wood Oy), Finland, in 1985. A sawing simulator was used to (i) calculate the yield of by-products and (ii) examine the influence of other sawing patterns on yield and sawing result. Profitability increased as log diameter increased. The absolute price difference between the smallest diameter class (133-152 mm) and the largest diameter class was M 99.1/msuperscript 3 over bark. Revenue (mainly from sawn timber) accounted for M 66/msuperscript 3 and costs (mainly of raw materials) for M 33.1 msuperscript 3 of this difference. Diameter, yield and sawing efficacy had a greater influence on costs and revenues than did stoppages.
  • Simula, Markku (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1983)
  • Pohjonen, Veli; Pukkala, Timo (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1988)
  • Malo, Pekka; Tahvonen, Olli; Suominen, Antti; Back, Philipp; Viitasaari, Lauri (2021)
    We solve a stochastic high-dimensional optimal harvesting problem by using reinforcement learning algorithms developed for agents who learn an optimal policy in a sequential decision process through repeated experience. This approach produces optimal solutions without discretization of state and control variables. Our stand-level model includes mixed species, tree size structure, optimal harvest timing, choice between rotation and continuous cover forestry, stochasticity in stand growth, and stochasticity in the occurrence of natural disasters. The optimal solution or policy maps the system state to the set of actions, i.e., clear-cutting, thinning, or no harvest decisions as well as the intensity of thinning over tree species and size classes. The algorithm repeats the solutions for deterministic problems computed earlier with time-consuming methods. Optimal policy describes harvesting choices from any initial state and reveals how the initial thinning versus clear-cutting choice depends on the economic and ecological factors. Stochasticity in stand growth increases the diversity of species composition. Despite the high variability in natural regeneration, the optimal policy closely satisfies the certainty equivalence principle. The effect of natural disasters is similar to an increase in the interest rate, but in contrast to earlier results, this tends to change the management regime from rotation forestry to continuous cover management.
  • Fornaro, Paolo (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    In the last couple of decades, advances in information technology have led to a dramatic increase in the availability of economic data. This doctoral dissertation consists of a collection of articles aimed at the study of various econometric methodologies that allow for the use of large datasets in macroeconomic applications. Chapters 2 and 5 present large dimensional models to nowcast and forecast macroeconomic variables of interests, such as Finnish real output and the binary recession indicator. In particular, in Chapter 2 I use microeconomic data to create timely estimates of the aggregate output indicator of the Finnish economy. In Chapter 5, I use a large dimensional probit model to compute short and long-term forecasts of the United States recession indicator. Chapters 3 and 4 consist of studies related to Finnish enteprises. Specifically, in Chapter 3 I examine the employment behavior of small and large Finnish firms and analyze how their job creation and cyclicality has differed over the last 16 years. In Chapter 4, I analyze the effect of shocks to large Finnish corporations onto the aggregate business cycle, finding that the shocks to a small number of companies are able to explain a substantial share of the fluctuations in aggregate output.
  • Vehkamäki, Seppo (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1986)
    Using a macromodel of a closed economy in which gross national product is assumed to be linearly dependent on the supply of raw wood, marginal conditions are derived for optimum equilibrium forestry with respect to growing stock and silviculture. The effects on Finnish forest owners' behaviour of various forms of taxation and subsidies, and investment are examined. Empirical studies are included concerning the raw wood market for softwood logs and silvicultural investments for tending young stands.