DP14012 Finance and Green Growth

Author(s): Ralph de Haas, Alexander Popov
Publication Date: September 2019
Date Revised: January 2021
Keyword(s): Carbon Emissions, Financial Development, Financial structure, Innovation
JEL(s): G10, O4, Q5
Programme Areas: Financial Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=14012

We study how countries' financial structure affects their transition to low-carbon growth. Using global industry-level data, we document that carbon-intensive industries reduce emissions faster in economies with deeper stock markets. Two channels underpin this stylized fact. First, stock markets reallocate investment towards energy-efficient sectors. Second, in countries with deeper stock markets, carbon-intensive sectors engage in more green innovation, resulting in lower carbon emissions per unit of output. Only one-tenth of these industry-level reductions in domestic emissions are offset by carbon embedded in imports. A firm-level analysis of an exogenous shock to the cost of equity in Belgium confirms our findings.