Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Does the IV estimator establish causality? Re-examining Chinese fertility-growth relationship

Contents:

Author Info

  • Tilak Abeysinghe

    (Singapore Centre for Applied and Policy Economics)

  • Gu Jiaying

Abstract

The instrumental variable (IV) estimator in a cross-sectional or panel regression model is often taken to provide valid causal inference from contemporaneous correlations. In this exercise we point out that the IV estimator, like the OLS estimator, cannot be used effectively for causal inference without the aid of non-sample information. We present three possible cases (lack of identification, accounting identities, and temporal aggregation) where IV estimates could lead to misleading causal inference. In other words, a non-zero IV estimate does not necessarily indicate a causal effect nor does the causal direction. In this light, we re-examine the relationship between Chinese provincial birth rates and economic growth. This exercise highlights the potential pitfalls of using too much temporal averaging to compile the data for cross sectional and panel regressions and the importance of estimating both (x on y and y on x) regressions to avoid misleading causal inferences. The GMM-SYS results from dynamic panel regressions based on five-year averages show a strong negative relationship running both ways, from births to growth and growth to births. This outcome, however, changes to a more meaningful one-way relationship from births to growth if the panel analysis is carried out with the annual data. Although falling birth rates in China have enhanced the countrys growth performance, it is difficult to attribute this effect solely to the one-child policy implemented after 1978.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.eaber.org/node/22758
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by East Asian Bureau of Economic Research in its series Microeconomics Working Papers with number 22758.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: Jan 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:eab:microe:22758

Contact details of provider:
Postal: JG Crawford Building #13, Asia Pacific School of Economics and Government, Australian National University, ACT 0200
Web page: http://www.eaber.org
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: IV estimator and causality inference; identification; accounting identities; temporal aggregation; spurious causality; Chinese provincial growth and fertility relationship.;

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Heckman, James J. & Urz├║a, Sergio, 2010. "Comparing IV with structural models: What simple IV can and cannot identify," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 156(1), pages 27-37, May.
  2. Guido W. Imbens, 2010. "Better LATE Than Nothing: Some Comments on Deaton (2009) and Heckman and Urzua (2009)," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(2), pages 399-423, June.
  3. Ross Levine & Norman Loayza & Thorsten Beck, 2002. "Financial Intermediation and Growth: Causality and Causes," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series, in: Leonardo Hernández & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (S (ed.), Banking, Financial Integration, and International Crises, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 2, pages 031-084 Central Bank of Chile.
  4. Joshua Angrist & Alan B. Krueger, 2001. "Instrumental Variables and the Search for Identification: From Supply and Demand to Natural Experiments," NBER Working Papers 8456, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Rajaguru GULASEKARAN & Tilak ABEYSINGHE, 2002. "The Distortionary Effects Of Temporal Aggregation On Granger Causality," Departmental Working Papers wp0204, National University of Singapore, Department of Economics.
  6. Abeysinghe, Tilak, 1993. "Time Cost, Relative Income and Fertility in Canada," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 6(2), pages 189-98, May.
  7. Judith Giles & Cara Williams, 2001. "Export-led growth: a survey of the empirical literature and some non-causality results. Part 1," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(3), pages 261-337.
  8. Steve Bond, 2002. "Dynamic panel data models: a guide to microdata methods and practice," CeMMAP working papers CWP09/02, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  9. Judith Giles & Cara Williams, 2001. "Export-led growth: a survey of the empirical literature and some non-causality results. Part 2," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(4), pages 445-470.
  10. Feder, Gershon, 1983. "On exports and economic growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1-2), pages 59-73.
  11. repec:fth:prinin:455 is not listed on IDEAS
  12. Richard A. Easterlin, 1980. "Population and Economic Change in Developing Countries," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number east80-1, May.
  13. Rajaguru, Gulasekaran & Abeysinghe, Tilak, 2008. "Temporal aggregation, cointegration and causality inference," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 101(3), pages 223-226, December.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eab:microe:22758. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shiro Armstrong).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.