International Journal of Services, Economics and Management
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International Journal of Services, Economics and Management (8 papers in press)
Could Financial Trouble be Avoided by Cooking at Home? An Analysis of Checking Account Records by Franziska Willenbuecher, Marc Fusaro Abstract: While the pricing of fast food and the social implications of the payday loan industry have been investigated individually, this study answers the question whether a cycle of debt could be avoided by cooking at home. While no statistical correlation between food spending and loan amounts was found, the results show that households could have saved on average 36.14% of the average loan amount, had they omitted fast food and restaurant meals for 30 days. Specifically, more than 23% of households could have saved 30% or more while almost 9% could have saved 70% or more of their loan amount if they had cooked at home. The findings of this research demonstrate that fast food, and food spending in general, are part of a larger spending pattern that could best be addressed through financial literacy curricula and public policy in the area of payday loans.
Keywords: financial trouble; cooking at home; payday loan industry; payday loans; fast food; cycle of debt; statistical correlation; loan amounts; food spending; food cost; households; restaurant meals; spending patterns; financial literacy; public policy; borrowers; paycheck; income; line of credit; inderscience.
Examining Strategic Group Membership and Firm Performance in the Global Hotel Industry
by Wei He, Tantatape Brahmasrene Abstract: The increasing complexity of global competitive environment requires a comprehensive approach that integrate business practices and strategic management theory to investigate firms performance. Following strategic group and competitive advantage theory, content analysis is adopted as a fundamental tool to investigate and categorize the competitive methods employed by multinational hotel firms in the new millennium era. The resulted differentiation-based strategic groups are further examined to explore the strategic sources of intra-industry performance differences in the global hotel industry. The results suggest that strategic group membership is an important predictor of hotel firms performance. The pattern of commitment to strategic group membership have significant impacts on multinational hotel firms business performance. These findings advance the current research on strategic groups performance relationship through discovering the important role played by strategic group commitment in the context of a globalized service industry. Keywords: Competitive Advantage; Strategic Planning; Competitive Method; Strategic Group; Strategic Group Membership; Strategic Group Commitment; Firm Performance.
IMPACTS OF DECENTRALIZATION ON QUALITY AND SATISFACTION: EVIDENCE FROM CITY BUS SERVICE IN VIETNAM by Hung V. Nguyen, Thang V. Nguyen, Cuong H. Nguyen, Anh T. Ha Abstract: Decentralization has been attributed to fruitful outcomes for public services. However, by employing agency theory in this paper we argue that full decentralization of all types dimensions may not help, at least in the public bus service. Instead, better quality and satisfaction can only be achieved in a more fiscal but less administrative and political decentralization. Data from two municipalities in the emerging economy of Vietnam is used to provide the empirical evidence. This paper thus is contributed to the literature of decentralization and the emerging one of quality and satisfaction in public services. Limitations of the study are then also discussed. Keywords: Public services; Transport economics; Decentralization; Quality; Satisfaction; Public policy.
Asset Quality and Performance: An Empirical Study of Indian Microfinance Institution by Sougata Ray Abstract: The objective of the study is to analyse the impact of the asset quality on the financial performance of the Indian Microfinance Institutions. Using the financial data of 76 for-profit Indian MFIs from the Microfinance Information Exchange database for the period 2006 to 2013, we observe that the quality of asset deteriorated significantly during the period of study and it has impacted the performance of the MFIs negatively. The commercialisation of the MFIs resulted in predatory lending and unfair debt collection practices ensuring better repayment rates. These practices, however, resulted in client defaults and an increase in both portfolio-at-risk and write-off ratio. The study, therefore, suggests that the MFIs need to re-examine and realign their operations so that social parameters are given due importance in every aspect of lending activity. This will ensure that MFIs achieve their social objective as well as ensure higher repayment rates. Keywords: Microfinance; Financial performance; Asset Quality; India; Panel Regression.
Evaluation of students satisfaction with perceived performance value projection in Malaysian private higher education institutions by GANESH RAMASAMY, Haslinda Abdullah Abstract: Drawing from the perceived performance theory to justify students Keywords: Studentsâ€™ Satisfaction; Perceived Performance; Administrative Support; Career Placement and Employability; Academic Staff Support; Institutional Factors; Information Systems.
Service Innovation: Building a Sustainable Competitive Advantage in Higher Education by Boon Liat Cheng, Tat Huei Cham, Dent Michael, Teck Heang Lee Abstract: The increasing pace of globalisation requires organizations to be innovative in their service provision in order to remain competitive and relevant in their industry. Higher education is one example that falls under this category because universities need to compete for students globally. Hence, service innovation plays a critical role in helping universities sustain their operation and gain a competitive edge to outperform the increased competition. In view of the importance of service innovation, this study aims to examine the impact of service innovation on students satisfaction, and to what extent their level of satisfaction can be translated to the perception of institutions image and their loyalty. The mediation effect of institution image is also addressed in this study. Data were collected from 400 university students and analysed using structural equation modelling. The results of the study show that all the factors in service innovation (i.e. product innovation, process innovation, organizational innovation and marketing innovation) have a significant effect on students satisfaction, which in turn, positively relates to their perception of the institution image and loyalty. The institutional image was also found to mediates the relationship between student satisfaction and loyalty. The implications of the findings and limitations of the study are then discussed.
Keywords: Service Innovation; Satisfaction; Image; Loyalty; Consumer Behaviour; Higher Education.
Financial and Current Account Interrelationship, An ARDL Bounds Test Approach: The case of Tunisia before the jasmine revolution by Hager Farhoud, Lotfi TALEB Abstract: The present paper investigates the long-run and short-run dynamics between the surplus of aggregated and disaggregated financial account and the persistent pattern of current account deficit in Tunisia during the whole period before the jasmine revolution (1977 to 2011) based on the Autoregressive Distributed Lag (ARDL) cointegration framework of Pesaran et al. (2001).The results highlight evidence of long-run cointegration relationships between current account and both financial account and its components in the Tunisian context, indicating that the current account deficit reflects the surplus of financial account. Regarding causality, the results found suggest also long-run and short-run bidirectional links between current account and both financial account, foreign direct investment and external borrowing in one hand, and in other hand between foreign direct investment and debt. This study proves also that there is evidence of a unidirectional causality from portfolio investment to current account over the long-run, and from both foreign direct investment and debt to portfolio investment over the short-run. Keywords: Current and financial account; financial account components; ARDL model; developing country; Tunisia.
Contribution of Mindfulness to Customer Orientation and Adaptive Selling by Peerayuth Charoensukmongkol Abstract: The objective of this research is to examine the relationship between the mindfulness of salespeople and their selling behaviors, as well as their satisfaction with their own sales performance. The sampling frame for this research includes salespersons from a world-leading-direct-sales corporation that has subsidiaries in Thailand. A total of 172 completed surveys were obtained. Results from a partial least squares regression of these surveys showed that both trait mindfulness and state mindfulness during the sales interactions of salespersons positively correlated with these outcome variables. Although trait mindfulness tended to explain adaptive selling indirectly, through the mediating role of customer orientation, only its direct linkage with customer orientation was supported. For state mindfulness during sales activities, the results supported that it is directly and positively associated with both customer orientation and adaptive selling. Lastly, the results showed that both trait mindfulness and state mindfulness during sales activities positively correlated with sales performance satisfaction. Therefore, the study suggests that mindfulness training is a possible intervention that sales organizations and/or sales managers may consider to help their sales personnel improve the quality of mindfulness that may be required for them to work more productively in their sales job. Keywords: mindfulness; personal selling; customer orientation; adaptive selling.