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New Evidence on Linear Regression and Treatment Effect Heterogeneity

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  • Słoczyński, Tymon

Abstract

In this paper I provide new evidence on the implications of treatment effect heterogeneity for least squares estimation when the effects are inappropriately assumed to be homogenous. I prove that under a set of benchmark assumptions linear regression provides a consistent estimator of the population average treatment effect on the treated times the population proportion of the nontreated individuals plus the population average treatment effect on the nontreated times the population proportion of the treated individuals. Consequently, in many empirical applications the linear regression estimates might not be close to any of the standard average treatment effects of interest.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 39524.

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Date of creation: 27 Jun 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:39524

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Keywords: treatment effects; linear regression; ordinary least squares; decomposition methods;

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  1. Richard K. Crump & V. Joseph Hotz & Guido W. Imbens & Oscar A. Mitnik, 2008. "Nonparametric Tests for Treatment Effect Heterogeneity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(3), pages 389-405, August.
  2. Roland G. Fryer & Steven D. Levitt, 2004. "Understanding the Black-White Test Score Gap in the First Two Years of School," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(2), pages 447-464, May.
  3. Løken, Katrine Vellesen & Mogstad, Magne & Wiswall, Matthew, 2011. "What Linear Estimators Miss: The E ects of Family Income on Child Outcomes," Working Papers in Economics 02/11, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
  4. Robert Barsky & John Bound & Kerwin Charles & Joseph Lupton, 2001. "Accounting for the Black-White Wealth Gap: A Nonparametric Approach," NBER Working Papers 8466, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Djebbari, Habiba & Smith, Jeffrey A., 2008. "Heterogeneous Impacts in PROGRESA," IZA Discussion Papers 3362, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Markus Frölich & Blaise Melly, 2013. "Unconditional Quantile Treatment Effects Under Endogeneity," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(3), pages 346-357, July.
  7. Blundell, Richard & Costa Dias, Monica, 2008. "Alternative Approaches to Evaluation in Empirical Microeconomics," IZA Discussion Papers 3800, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Ben Jann, 2008. "The Blinder–Oaxaca decomposition for linear regression models," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 8(4), pages 453-479, December.
  9. Hilary W. Hoynes & Marianne P Bitler & Jonah Gelbach, 2005. "What Mean Impacts Miss:Distributional Effects of Welfare Reform Experiments," Working Papers 531, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  10. Nicole Fortin & Thomas Lemieux & Sergio Firpo, 2010. "Decomposition Methods in Economics," NBER Working Papers 16045, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Keisuke Hirano & Guido W. Imbens & Geert Ridder, 2003. "Efficient Estimation of Average Treatment Effects Using the Estimated Propensity Score," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(4), pages 1161-1189, 07.
  12. Sergio Firpo, 2004. "Efficient Semiparametric Estimation of Quantile Treatment Effects," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 605, Econometric Society.
  13. Joshua D. Angrist, 1995. "Estimating the Labor Market Impact of Voluntary Military Service Using Social Security Data on Military Applicants," NBER Working Papers 5192, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Dan A. Black & Jeffrey A. Smith & Mark C. Berger & Brett J. Noel, 2003. "Is the Threat of Reemployment Services More Effective Than the Services Themselves? Evidence from Random Assignment in the UI System," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1313-1327, September.
  15. James J. Heckman, 2001. "Micro Data, Heterogeneity, and the Evaluation of Public Policy: Nobel Lecture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(4), pages 673-748, August.
  16. Patrick Kline, 2011. "Oaxaca-Blinder as a Reweighting Estimator," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(3), pages 532-37, May.
  17. LaLonde, Robert J, 1986. "Evaluating the Econometric Evaluations of Training Programs with Experimental Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 604-20, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Sloczynski, Tymon, 2013. "Population Average Gender Effects," IZA Discussion Papers 7315, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Boris Kaiser, 2013. "Decomposing Differences in Arithmetic Means: A Doubly-Robust Estimation Approach," Diskussionsschriften dp1308, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft.

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