Intangible Investment and Firm Performance
We combine survey and administrative data for about 13,000 New Zealand firms from 2005 to 2013 to study intangible investment and firm performance. We find that firm size and moderate competition is associated with higher intangible investment, while firm age is associated with lower intangible investment. Examining firm performance, we find that higher investment is associated with higher labour and capital input, higher revenue, and higher firm-reported employee and customer satisfaction, but not with higher productivity or profitability. The evidence suggests that intangible investment is associated with growth and ‘soft’ performance objectives, but not with productivity or profitability.
KeywordsFirm performance Industrial policy Intangible investment Productivity
JEL ClassificationD22 D24 L21
This research is partially funded by the Productivity Hub under the Productivity Partnership programme, and by Queensland University of Technology. We would like to thank Lawrence J. White and an anonymous referee for valuable feedback. We also thank participants at an internal Motu seminar, as well as participants at a Productivity Commission of New Zealand workshop for helpful comments.
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