International Research Journal of Finance and Economics
 Issue 174
 July, 2019
Benchmarking of the Banking Systems of the Countries Signatory of the Association Agreements with the European Union
Lopotenco Viorica

The main objective of this study is to compare the efficiency of the banking systems of the Eastern Partnership countries - the Republic of Moldova, Ukraine, and Georgia - and its impact on economic growth in these countries. The study analyzed the data from the central banks' reports of these three countries. Banking efficiency assessed through two methodologies: financial and econometric indicators that together allow for a complex picture for the benchmarking of the banking systems of the Eastern Partnership countries. Efficiency assessment through financial indicators included some parameters.
In order to assess the efficiency of banking systems, using the econometric methods, the intermediation approach, which looks at the bank as an intermediary of financial services, assumes that banks collect funds for deposits with labor and capital and converts them into loans and other assets. The efficiency of the banking system was determined using the DEA assessment method. This study concludes that the analysis highlighted the banking systems of the countries with the most significant problems in this respect. In the Ukrainian banking system and the Moldovan banking system, there are more severe deficiencies. On the other hand, Georgia, due to limited resources in the national economy, has focused on developing the banking sector on foreign investors and on attracting remittances in the banking sector and as a result and has achieved remarkable results in this respect.
Keywords: Eastern Partnership countries; financial system; efficiency of the financial system; financial indicators approach; econometric approach; DEA method.
Does Openness Affect the Economic Development and Growth? : Evidence from a Panel ARDL Approach
Wajdi Bardi

Our main contribution in this paper consists at analyzing the impact of trade openness on the economic growth of the countries bordering the Mediterranean using a panel of eight countries from 1975 to 2016. We apply ARDL panel which is a technique recently developed. We study the effects of openness to international trade on economic growth while incorporating economic policy variables. The results show that the variables of commercial and financial openness favor economic growth. The free trade agreements that the European Union has signed with certain countries in the Mediterranean basin are designed above all to encourage greater regional economic integration and an increase in their potential growth. Therefore, our findings show that the financial sector is slow to affect economic growth in these countries. This study reveals that human capital and the investment rate support the economic growth of our sample. In addition, we conclude that a process of economic convergence has begun in these countries.
Keywords: Trade openness, Economic integration, Endogenous growth, Macroeconomic policy, ARDL method.
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Time-Driven Activity-Based Costing in Medical Institutions
Lee-fei pan, Jenn-Huei Renn, Chun-Peng Liu, Ching-Hsiang Lin, Hong-Da Wang*, Wun-Rong Yan and Yu-Heng CHENG

Since 2010, the stage-wise introduction of Taiwan’s diagnosis-related group payment system (Tw-DRGs) has been severely affecting the income of medical institutions, forcing them to strengthen cost control due to income restrictions. This study used time-driven activity-based costing (TD-ABC) to calculate the actual reasonable medical cost for total hip replacement surgery (THR), provide cost information required for operation management decisions, and improve medical efficiency and value. We find that the mean normal cost for THR was 107,083 NTD. The proportion of various costs over the total cost was 43.55% (medicine and medical material costs), 14.43% (staff costs), 11.58% (case surgical trolley), 11.24% (hospital bed costs), 10.26% (operating theater and equipment cost), and 7.07% (anesthesia costs).
In summary, TD-ABC can avoid medical cost distortion caused by the indirect costs exceeding 50% of the ordinary costs. It provides rational and detailed cost information to facilitate management decisions, such as pricing for idle capacity outsourced inspection items. The examined hospital established a hospital-wide medical cost analysis culture with management’s support. In future, it can combine a performance appraisal and reward system to develop optimal standardized clinical pathways to control costs and improve medical quality.
Keywords: diagnosis-related group system, medical costs, time-driven activity-based costing, total hip replacement
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Effect of Liberalized and Restricted Trade Policy Regimes on Production and Export of Maize of Nigeria
ACHOJA Felix Odemero, PANAMA Oghenehogagame and OKEKE Daniel Chukwujioke

International trade in maize grain is one of the drivers of Nigerian economic growth. Policy fine-tuning is employed as mechanism to stimulate foreign agricultural trade. Our understanding on the response of trade in maize to policy fine-tuning is not yet clear. This study investigated the effect of liberalized and restricted policy regimes on production and export of maize of Nigeria. Fifteen year Times series data (2001-2015) on maize production, exports and import were obtained from Food and Agriculture Organization Statistical (FAOSTAT) database and used to achieve the objectives of the study. Data were analyzed using percentages, tables, graphs, Time-response model, Euler test and Augmented Dickey Fuller (ADF) Unit Root Test. We found out that maize yield in Nigeria showed an upward trend. It was also found that positive and negative international trade balances were 9,729 tons and -199,095 tons, respectively. This result implies that although maize grain output is on the increase, Nigeria is still a net importer of maize products. Test of hypothesis indicates that maize output has statistically significant positive response to trade policy regimes over the period (p<0.05). Trade Liberalized and Restriction Policy regimes favored significantly maize output (p<0.05). Trade Restriction Policy has statistically significant positive influence on maize grain export (p<0.05). However trade imbalance was biased towards maize product import, indicating that Nigeria has lost some foreign exchange earnings in this regard. We found sufficient evidence to conclude that restricted trade policy regime has dual effects. We recommended that a Restricted Trade Policy Regime that encourages more aggregate maize production and export opportunities (international agribusiness in maize), is important and should be sustained in Nigeria.
Keywords: Effects, Liberalized and restricted policy regimes, Maize production, Exports, Nigeria
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Study on the Bubble Identification and Bursting Time of the Stock Market in America, Germany and Japan
Chung-Hsiang Tung and Szu-Lang Liao

As far as the financial market is concerned, every burst of the bubble has had a major impact on the national economy, leading to an increase in the unemployment rate. Identifying the financial bubble and predicting its bursting time has been a hot topic in finance academic research. This paper adopts the stochastic index (K value), the relative strength index (RSI value) and the positive deviation as the major indicators of stock market bubbles. When the K value and the RSI value reach 85, the deviation deviates from the standard of the past five years moving average, it is considered that there is a bubble in the stock market. On this basis, observe whether the bubble will burst and the time required for bursting. From the empirical results, it can be seen that the bubbles identified by the three countries using the technical indicators have a bursting probability greater than 87%. Comparing the three countries of America, Germany and Japan, we find that the United States is the most matured stock market in the world. Its bubble burst time is short and its impact on the market is small when it breaks. The Germany bubble burst time is also short, but it possibly shocks the stock market. While Japan's bubble burst time is generally longer, which makes the bubble expand and lead to a greater chance of shocking the market when bubbles burst.
Keywords: Bubbles, Technical Indicators, Bias, Moving Average, Bursting Time
JEL Classification: G15