We investigate how the regional institutional environment—in particular, the political environment—affects Russian new firm entry across regions, industries, firm size classes, and time. We find that entry rates in Russia are explained by natural entry rates and the institutional environment. Industries that are characterized by low entry barriers in developed market economies are found to have lower entry rates in regions subject to greater political fluidity, as in the case of gubernatorial change. We also find that higher levels of political fluidity and democracy increase relative entry rates for small-sized firms but reduce them for medium-sized or large ones.

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