BICEPS/SSE Riga Research Seminar: Does Nationalization Work? Evidence from Government Takeovers in Russia

We kindly invite you to the BICEPS/SSE Riga research seminar! It will take place on Thursday, February 6 at 17.00 in room 611 with the presentation:

“Does Nationalization Work? Evidence from Government Takeovers in Russia” by Carsten Sprenger, New Economic School, Moscow.


After the decade of large-scale privatization in the 1990s, many emerging market economies have undergone a policy shift towards consolidation and extension of the state sector, partly through selected nationalizations. Also the Russian government has been increasing its role as an owner in several sectors of the economy since the 2000s. We study the factors that drive nationalization of private companies and find economic factors such as profitability or revenue growth to be irrelevant while industry affiliation, in particular, an indicator variable for strategic industries is a good predictor of nationalization. We further study the effects of nationalization on firm-level outcomes such as revenues, investment, leverage, employment, wages, and operational performance (profitability) of target companies. To address these questions, we use a comprehensive hand-collected data set of more than 250 government takeovers in Russia between 2004 and 2013 and a carefully matched sample of companies that stayed under private ownership. Preliminary results for a subsample of transactions from 2004 to 2008 show a neutral effect of nationalization on performance and increased financial leverage. We further distinguish companies that have been bailed out (based on low values of equity and losses in consecutive years) from companies that have been nationalized to supposedly strategic or other reasons. Finally, we highlight changes in sources of funding from private to state-owned banks, subsidies, CEO turnover, and the composition of the board of directors going along with nationalization and how they affect match-adjusted performance changes.


Next seminars

2020-02-20         “The Early History of Gold Mining in the Russian Far East and Northeast China” by Mark Gamsa (Tel Aviv University).

2020-03-05         “Wealth Distribution and Monetary Policy” by Ludmila Fadejeva (Bank of Latvia).

2020-03-19         “Modelling the population of collusive firms” by Chloé Le Coq (SITE, University of Paris II Panthéon-Assas). Seminar is CANCELLED!


No prior registration for the seminar is necessary. For any questions about the seminar, or if you have a colleague that would like to be added to the distribution list, please write to Nicolas Gavoille.