Partisan bias in economic news: Evidence on the agenda-setting behavior of U.S. newspapers
We study the agenda-setting political behavior of a large sample of U.S. newspapers during the 1996–2005 period. Our purpose is to examine the intensity of coverage of economic issues as a function of the underlying economic conditions and the political affiliation of the incumbent president, focusing on unemployment, inflation, the federal budget and the trade deficit. We investigate whether there is any significant correlation between the endorsement policy of newspapers, and the differential coverage of bad/good economic news as a function of the president's political affiliation. We find evidence that newspapers with pro-Democratic endorsement pattern systematically give more coverage to high unemployment when the incumbent president is a Republican than when the president is Democratic, compared to newspapers with pro-Republican endorsement pattern. This result is robust to controlling for the partisanship of readers. We find similar but less robust results for the trade deficit. We also find some evidence that newspapers cater to the partisan tastes of readers in the coverage of the budget deficit. We find no evidence of a partisan bias – or at least of a bias that is correlated with the endorsement or reader partisanship – for stories on inflation.
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.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
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.:
- Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2010.
"What Drives Media Slant? Evidence From U.S. Daily Newspapers,"
Econometric Society, vol. 78(1), pages 35-71, 01.
- Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2006. "What Drives Media Slant? Evidence from U.S. Daily Newspapers," NBER Working Papers 12707, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David Str�mberg, 2004.
"Mass Media Competition, Political Competition, and Public Policy,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Oxford University Press, vol. 71(1), pages 265-284.
- David Str–mberg, 2004. "Mass Media Competition, Political Competition, and Public Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(1), pages 265-284, 01.
- Alan Gerber & Daniel Bergan & Dean Karlan, 2006.
"Does the media matter? A field experiment measuring the effect of newspapers on voting behavior and political opinions,"
Natural Field Experiments
00252, The Field Experiments Website.
- Alan S. Gerber & Dean Karlan & Daniel Bergan, 2009. "Does the Media Matter? A Field Experiment Measuring the Effect of Newspapers on Voting Behavior and Political Opinions," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(2), pages 35-52, April.
- Gerber, Alan & Karlan, Dean & Bergan, Daniel, 2006. "Does The Media Matter? A Field Experiment Measuring the Effect of Newspapers on Voting Behavior and Political Opinions," Working Papers 12, Yale University, Department of Economics.
- Riccardo Puglisi, 2006.
"Being The New York Times: Thepolitical Behaviour Of A Newspaper,"
STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series
20, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
- Puglisi Riccardo, 2011. "Being The New York Times: the Political Behaviour of a Newspaper," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 11(1), pages 1-34, April.
- Matthew Gentzkow & Edward L. Glaeser & Claudia Goldin, 2004.
"The Rise of the Fourth Estate: How Newspapers Became Informative and Why It Mattered,"
NBER Working Papers
10791, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Matthew Gentzkow & Edward L. Glaeser & Claudia Goldin, 2006. "The Rise of the Fourth Estate. How Newspapers Became Informative and Why It Mattered," NBER Chapters, in: Corruption and Reform: Lessons from America's Economic History, pages 187-230 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Anderson, Simon P & McLaren, John, 2010.
"Media Mergers and Media Bias with Rational Consumers,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
7768, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Simon P. Anderson & John McLaren, 2012. "Media Mergers And Media Bias With Rational Consumers," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 10(4), pages 831-859, 08.
- Jeffrey Milyo & Tim Groseclose, 2005.
"A Measure of Media Bias,"
0501, Department of Economics, University of Missouri, revised 25 Aug 2005.
- Fair, Ray C, 1978.
"The Effect of Economic Events on Votes for President,"
The Review of Economics and Statistics,
MIT Press, vol. 60(2), pages 159-73, May.
- Ray C. Fair, 1976. "The Effects of Economic Events on Votes for President," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 418, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Timothy Besley & Andrea Prat, 2005.
"Handcuffs for the Grabbing Hand? Media Capture and Government Accountability,"
STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series
07, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
- Timothy Besley & Andrea Prat, 2006. "Handcuffs for the Grabbing Hand? Media Capture and Government Accountability," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 720-736, June.
- Besley, Timothy J. & Prat, Andrea, 2002. "Handcuffs for the Grabbing Hand? Media Capture and Government Accountability," CEPR Discussion Papers 3132, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Stefano DellaVigna & Ethan Kaplan, 2007.
"The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1187-1234, 08.
- Stefano DellaVigna & Ethan Kaplan, 2006. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," NBER Working Papers 12169, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- DellaVigna, Stefano & Kaplan, Ethan, 2006. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," Seminar Papers 748, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
- Dan Bernhardt & Stefan Krasa & Mattias Polborn, 2006.
"Political Polarization and the Electoral Effects of Media Bias,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
1798, CESifo Group Munich.
- Bernhardt, Dan & Krasa, Stefan & Polborn, Mattias, 2008. "Political polarization and the electoral effects of media bias," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(5-6), pages 1092-1104, June.
- Valentino Larcinese, 2003. "The Instrumental Voter Goes to the News-Agent: Demand for Information, Election Closeness, and the Media," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 579.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:95:y:2011:i:9:p:1178-1189. 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: (Zhang, Lei)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.