Business Regulations and Growth

28 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

Date Written: June 9, 2015


Over the past decade, there has been increased interest in improving business regulations, in part because of the increased availability of data that can inform and monitor those improvements. This paper analyzes whether these regulatory changes are linked to economic outcomes. With panel data for 10 years across more than 180 countries, the paper establishes the link between business regulations, firm creation, and growth. It is found that an improvement of 10 points in the overall measure of business regulations is linked to an increase of around 0.5 new businesses per 1,000 adults. Moreover, the results show that although small changes in the overall level of business regulations may have a negligible link to growth, moving from the lowest quartile of improvement in business regulations to the highest quartile is associated with a significant increase in annual per capita growth of around 0.8 percentage points. In addition, the results highlight the importance of sound entry and exit regulations and sound credit market regulations and court enforcement for growth.

Keywords: Marketing, Economic Theory & Research, Private Sector Economics, Legal Products, Judicial System Reform, Legal Reform, Legislation, Economic Growth, Regulatory Regimes, Industrial Economics, Social Policy, Private Sector Development Law

Suggested Citation

Divanbeigi, Raian and Ramalho, Rita, Business Regulations and Growth (June 9, 2015). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7299, Available at SSRN:

Raian Divanbeigi (Contact Author)

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Rita Ramalho

World Bank ( email )

Washington, DC 20433
United States

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