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Destructive entrepreneurship in the small business sector: bankruptcy fraud in Sweden, 1830–2010

Marcus Box (), Karl Gratzer () and Xiang Lin ()
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Marcus Box: Södertörn University
Karl Gratzer: Södertörn University
Xiang Lin: Södertörn University

Small Business Economics, 2020, vol. 54, issue 2, No 5, 437-457

Abstract: Abstract Entrepreneurship will not always productive: Baumol (1990, 1993) distinguishes between productive, unproductive, and destructive entrepreneurial activities, and in the last two cases, new values are not created. Setting of from the notion of destructive entrepreneurship and the bankruptcy institute as framework for the empirical analysis, we use long aggregate series on bankruptcies and bankruptcy frauds in Sweden, 1830–2010. We operationalize destructive entrepreneurship with bankruptcy frauds. The bankruptcy institute is not a pure cleansing mechanism; assets can be redistributed by criminal procedure. Thus, a form of destructive entrepreneurship can be conducted within this system. We link bankruptcy frauds to the selection mechanism—the aggregate bankruptcy volume—over time. We cannot establish any direct linkages between the bankruptcy volume and institutional changes. However, and in line with research on bankruptcy diffusion and diffusion of economic crimes, we find that bankruptcy frauds have significant, positive impacts on the bankruptcy volume. Therefore, our results indicate that increases in bankruptcy frauds, destructive entrepreneurship, would affect the economic system.

Keywords: Bankruptcy; Bankruptcy fraud; Destructive entrepreneurship; Sweden (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E3 C22 G33 K4 L26 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s11187-018-0043-3

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