We perform a careful spectral analysis of the correlation structures observed in real and financial returns for a large pool of long-lived US corporations and find that financial returns are characterized by strong collective fluctuations that are absent from real returns. Once the excessive comovement is subtracted from individual financial time series, the behaviour of real and financial returns is virtually identical in both the cross-sectional and time series domains, thereby demonstrating the inherently collective nature of excessive fluctuations. Put differently, if excess volatility is to be reduced, then one would do well to inhibit excess comovement first. At any rate, the excessive behaviour in volatility and comovement should no longer be studied in isolation of each other.
How do political parties arrive at their policy positions? We conceptualize position formation in federalist countries as an intra-party bargaining process in which subnational parties compete with each other in an attempt to get their own positions into their national party manifesto. Drawing on theories about inter-party bargaining over ministerial portfolios, we hypothesize that the bargaining success of subnational parties depends on their parliamentary strength. We evaluate our hypotheses based on a comprehensive dataset on policy positions of national and subnational parties in Germany from 1990 until 2009. Our results show that German subnational parties that are powerful in the second parliamentary chamber (Bundesrat) are particularly successful in shaping the manifesto of their national party. The findings have important implications for our understanding of intra-party politics and position formation within political parties in Germany more specifically and federalist countries more generally.
Supplier selection is an integral part of supply chain management (SCM). It plays a prominent role in the purchasing activity of manufacturing and trading companies. Evaluation of vendors and procurement planning requires simultaneous consideration of tangible and intangible decision factors, some of which may conflict. A large body of analytical and intuitive methods has been proposed to trade off conflicting aspects of realism and optimize the selection process. In the large companies the fields of decision makers’ (DMs) expertise are highly distributed and DMs’ authorities are unequal. On the other hand, the decision components and their interactions are very complex. These facts restrict the effectiveness of using the existing methods in practice. The authors present a multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) method which facilitates making supplier selection decisions by the distributed groups of experts and improves quality of the order allocation decisions. A numerical example is presented and applicability of the proposed algorithm is demonstrated in the Raiffeisen Westfalen Mitte, eG in Germany.