Cost efficiency and financial situation of local governments in the Canary Isles during the recession

Diego Prior, Ignacio Martín-Pinillos-Castellanos, Gemma Pérez-López, José L. Zafra-Gómez

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28 Citations (Web of Science)


This paper examines cost efficiency in the Spanish municipal public sector, in a specific geographic area (the Canary Isles, Spain), with respect to financial condition and different types of municipal debt. The study focuses on municipalities dependent on tourism and on the consequences to them of the Great Recession, doing so via a two-stage analysis. In the first, the order-m method is used to evaluate the cost efficiency of 77 Canary Isles municipalities, for the period 2008-12. In the second stage, we examine the effect produced on cost efficiency by different types of borrowing (long term, short term, financial and commercial) together with other financial, economic, political and quality variables, using the model developed by Simar and Wilson (2007), based on a truncated bootstrap regression with panel data. Empirical analysis shows that in times of crisis there is a significant relationship between the components of financial condition and cost efficiency. Inconclusion, municipal cost efficiency increases with commercial debt, but decreases with financial debt. Furthermore, certain socioeconomic variables affect the levels of cost efficiency.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-144
Number of pages16
JournalRevista de Contabilidad
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • Borrowing
  • Efficiency
  • Financial condition
  • Local public sector
  • Order-m


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