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CEP discussion paper
Monetary policy, product market competition and growth
Philippe Aghion, Emmanuel Farhi and Enisse Kharroubi
December 2018
Paper No' CEPDP1590:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: E32; E43; E52

Tags: growth; financial conditions; firm leverage; competition

In this paper we argue that monetary easing fosters growth more in more credit-constrained environments, and the more so the higher the degree of product market competition. Indeed when competition is low, large rents allow firms to stay on the market and reinvest optimally, no matter how funding conditions change with aggregate conditions. To test this prediction, we use industry-level and firm-level data from the Euro Area to look at the effects on sectoral growth and firm-level growth of the unexpected drop in long-term government bond yields following the announcement of the Outright Monetary Transactions program (OMT) by the ECB. We find that the monetary policy easing induced by OMT, contributed to raising sectoral (firm-level) growth more in more highly leveraged sectors (firms), and the more so the higher the degree of product market competition in the country (sector).