Mr Marcus Biermann

Mr Marcus Biermann

PhD Candidate in Economics

Department of Economics

Connect with me

English, German
Key Expertise
International Trade

About me

Job Market Placement
Post-doc, Université catholique de Louvain

Research interests
International Trade (primary)
Economic History, Finance (secondary)

Job market paper
Causal Evidence on the International Transmission of Crises Through Multinational Firms
(with Kilian Huber)

Read the abstract and download the paper

We study whether multinational corporations transmit the effects of a localized banking crisis to countries all over the world. We identify an exogenous shock to the credit supply of multinational parent corporations located in Germany. The shock to parents caused a reduction in the sales of their international affiliates for three years. We use unique data on linkages between parents and affiliates to study the transmission mechanism from parents’ credit supply to affiliates’ sales. Both financial and real channels played a role: Parents withdrew equity from their affiliates, reduced intra-firm trade with affiliates, and required more long-term lending from the affiliates. The results improve our understanding of the internal operations of multinational firms and suggest that multinationals contribute to global business cycle synchronization.

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Publications and additional papers

Trade and the Size Distribution of Firms: Evidence from the German Empire
(Revise and resubmit at the Canadian Journal of Economics)

Abstract: What is the effect of trade on the size distribution of firms? I collected historical data between 1882 and 1907 from the German Empire to address this question. I can then match three data sets according to the same geographic boundaries: industry census data, railway and waterway trade data. The key findings are that trade integration impacts the firm size distribution heterogeneously across five size categories. I find evidence of a hierarchical and stark shift in employment and firm share from the smallest toward larger firm size categories. A “Bartik” instrument is proposed to argue that the correlations described are indeed causal. I provide evidence for a fall in transport costs and technology adoption as mechanisms to explain the stylized facts observed in the data.

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Placement Officer
Professor Mark Schankerman 

Professor Gianmarco Ottaviano
Professor Daniel Sturm

Dr Veronica Rappoport
Dr Catherine Thomas

Professor Gianmarco Ottaviano
Professor Daniel Sturm
Dr Veronica Rappoport
Dr Catherine Thomas

Contact information


Phone number
+44 (0)7599648370

Room number

Office Address
Department of Economics,
London School of Economics and Political Science,
Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE