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Journal of Competitiveness

The Performance Determinants of Trading Companies: A Stakeholder Perspective

Zdenek Tousek, Jana Hinke, Barbora Malinska, Martin Prokop

financial leverage, profitability, return on assets, return on equity, retail, wholesale

This research aims to propose a model adding to the competitiveness of companies by identifying factors that determine the profitability of the selected companies (both publicly traded and unquoted private companies of all sizes). Another aim is to prove a dichotomy between the motivation of equity holders and senior lenders as far as acceptable financial leverage is concerned. The paper is innovative based on its combination of several different factors influencing corporate profitability (i.e. firm-specific effects: current ratio, labor cost ratio, working capital financing ratio, long-term financing ratio, return on sales, age of the firm; industry-specific effects and other macroeconomic effects) and by assessing determinants concerning the interests of shareholders and other stakeholders using a panel regression analysis with fixed effects. The authors prove that the determinants of the operating performance of Czech trading companies differ substantially when the performance is measured by ROA or by ROE. This clearly shows discrepancies between the equity holder interest to maximize their returns on investment and the other stakeholder interests. Specifically, the authors have found that the leverage, both in terms of working capital and long-term financing, negatively impacts returns on assets. On the other hand, it positively impacts returns for equity holders both in the Wholesale and Retail sub-samples. Interestingly, other determinants of operating performance, such as capital intensity, labor cost ratio, historical profitability, and macroeconomic variables, are of comparable significance, impacting both the ROA and ROE analyses.

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Tousek, Z., Hinke, J., Malinska, B., & Prokop, M. (2021). The Performance Determinants of Trading Companies: A Stakeholder Perspective. Journal of Competitiveness, 13(2), 152–170. https://doi.org/10.7441/joc.2021.02.09

Journal of Competitiveness


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ISSN 1804-171X (Print); eISSN 1804-1728 (On-line)

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