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Do Trust-Based Relations Improve Firm’s Performance? Evidence from Transition Economies

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  • D23 - Organizational Behavior
  • Transaction Costs
  • Property Rights
  • L14 - Transactional Relationships
  • Contracts And Reputation
  • Networks
  • P31 - Socialist Enterprises And Their Transitions
  • Z13 - Economic Sociology
  • Economic Anthropology
  • Social And Economic Stratification


The purpose of this paper is to analyze the impact of trust-based relations on firm’s performance in transition economies. The trade credit variable is used as a proxy of trust-based relations and the propensity score matching method is employed to establish casual link between relational governance and business performance in the study. The research is conducted using data from a large survey of firms across 28 transition economies. The results of the study suggest that informal trust-based institutions of contract governance represent an important way for enhancing of business performance. To say distinctly, our findings indicate that in transition economies trade credits positively affect firms’ sales growth. They provide incentives for more intensive innovation activities and ensure higher labor productivity rates. The firms that trust their partners are characterized by larger proportions of reinvested profits as well. The main contribution of this paper is that it provides new empirical insights into the casual link between trust-based relations and business performance of firms in transition economies.

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