Journal of Economic and Social Measurement - Volume 39, issue 4
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ISSN 0747-9662 (P)
ISSN 1875-8932 (E)
The Journal of Economic and Social Measurement (JESM) is a quarterly journal that is concerned with the investigation of all aspects of production, distribution and use of economic and other societal statistical data, and with the use of computers in that context. JESM publishes articles that consider the statistical methodology of economic and social science measurements. It is concerned with the methods and problems of data distribution, including the design and implementation of data base systems and, more generally, computer software and hardware for distributing and accessing statistical data files. Its focus on computer software also includes the valuation of algorithms and their implementation, assessing the degree to which particular algorithms may yield more or less accurate computed results. It addresses the technical and even legal problems of the collection and use of data, legislation and administrative actions affecting government produced or distributed data files, and similar topics.
The journal serves as a forum for the exchange of information and views between data producers and users. In addition, it considers the various uses to which statistical data may be put, particularly to the degree that these uses illustrate or affect the properties of the data. The data considered in JESM are usually economic or social, as mentioned, but this is not a requirement; the editorial policies of JESM do not place a priori restrictions upon the data that might be considered within individual articles. Furthermore, there are no limitations concerning the source of the data.
Abstract: We examine two issues in business cycle research. We first compare the performance of Hamilton's Markov-Switching (MS) model and the Bry and Boschan algorithm in replicating the US business cycle features. A number of studies, especially Harding and Pagan, have demonstrated that Hamilton's nonlinear MS model do not replicate business cycle features better than simpler linear models. Second, we compare the ability of the U.S. real GDP and a relatively new coincident index of four economic indicators, published by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, in replicating features of the U.S. business cycle. We find that Hamilton's MS model is…not robust when compared to the Bry and Boschan algorithm with respect to different sample periods and to different measures of real income. Second, we also find that a constructed quarterly version of the coincident index is slightly preferred over the real GDP.
Keywords: Markov-switching model, Bry and Boschan algorithm, business cycle dating
Abstract: We provide a face validity test of the Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) approved minimum six-question sequence (6QS) to capture the population with disabilities. Using linked 2009 Current Population Survey/Social Security Administration records data we find that the 6QS captures 66.3% of those whom administrative records confirm are receiving disability-based Social Security benefits. Adding a work-activity question increases our capture rate to 89.3%. We find little difference in the distribution of conditions of those reporting only a 6QS-based disability and those only reporting a work activity-based disability. The four function-related questions do a relatively good job of…capturing beneficiaries based on these conditions. But the work-activity question does a far better job of capturing beneficiaries than do the two activity-related questions. We conclude that the 6QS is fundamentally flawed and that any minimum standard for capturing the population with disabilities must include a work-activity question.
Keywords: Measuring disability populations, function-based measures, activity-based measures, disability prevalence, matched CPS/SSA administrative records data
Abstract: The matching of administrative records to labor-market surveys is both commonly done and represents an important innovation in the measurement of earnings. However, a potential problem is that this process might introduce sample-selection bias. Individuals typically must give informed consent to have their earnings matched, and consenters may display systematically different labor-market behavior than non-consenters. In this paper, we use the differential timing of the consent process to test whether individuals in the Health and Retirement Study who consented represent a non-random, thus biased sample. In particular, we find that for both men and women there is a general pattern…of negative selection across three measures of pre-entry labor-market behavior: labor-force participation, self-employment, and earnings.
Abstract: To better understand the role of special purpose entities (SPEs) in economic accounting statistics, international guidelines on foreign direct investment (FDI) positions and transactions recommend supplemental measures on SPEs but leave the accounting method for supplemental measures open to further research. This paper considers formulary apportionment as an accounting method for current account transactions related to FDI and for supplemental measures on SPEs, with an application for transactions in income in the U.S. current account. The empirical results reveal that formulary apportionment reduces U.S. income receipts and U.S. income payments on FDI, which yields an implied increase in U.S. gross…domestic product (GDP) of 0.9 percent for the period 2005 to 2009. The results suggest that transactions attributable to non-resident SPEs have a relatively large effect on U.S. GDP while transactions attributable to resident SPEs have a relatively small effect on U.S. GDP.
Keywords: National accounting, production, FDI, multinational firms, balance of payments
Abstract: This paper considers regression techniques for grouped data. In particular, it is shown how regression statistics obtained from individual level data can be replicated by means of grouped data. Three common regression approaches are considered: ordinary least squares, instrumental variables and nonlinear least squares regression. Also provided is code to implement the grouped-data techniques in the econometric software package Stata. An empirical example illustrates that the grouped-data formulas indeed replicate the statistics obtained from the individual level data. It is also argued why grouped data are important for empirical research.
Keywords: Data confidentiality, grouped data, instrumental variables, nonlinear least Squares, ordinary least squares
Abstract: House price indexes (HPIs) while particularly important to the analysis of recessions, are prone to methodological and coverage differences which can undermine both within-country and cross-country economic analysis. The paper first uses a panel data set of 157 quarterly HPIs from 24 countries, along with associated measurement variables, to report on whether and how differences in HPI measurement matter. Second, revisits the modeling of the determinants of house price inflation using HPIs adjusted for differences in measurement practice.
Keywords: House price indexes, housing inflation, residential property price indexes