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Political promotion and labor investment efficiency

Dongmin Kong, Shasha Liu and Junyi Xiang

China Economic Review, 2018, vol. 50, issue C, 273-293

Abstract: This study investigates the effect of political promotion incentives on the labor investment efficiency of firms by focusing on human capital misallocation. We show that 1) promotion incentives of local politicians significantly increase firm-level employment growth and decrease labor investment efficiency. 2) Causality is established using the number of death toll in local mining accidents to isolate exogenous shocks on the promotion incentives of local politicians, and placebo tests further confirm the causality. 3) For under-hiring firms, promotion incentives only increase the employment of low human capital, thus distorting human capital structure and decreasing labor investment efficiency. 4) Our findings are robust to alternative specifications. Overall, we highlight the political economy channel of human capital misallocation from the perspective of career concerns of local politicians.

Keywords: Political promotion; Human capital misallocation; Labor investment efficiency; China (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: G32 J24 D72 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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China Economic Review is currently edited by B.M. Fleisher, K. X. D. Huang, M.E. Lovely, Y. Wen, X. Zhang and X. Zhu

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