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Nonrenewable Resource Prices: Deterministic or Stochastic Trends?

  • Junsoo Lee
  • John A. List
  • Mark C. Strazicich

In this paper we examine temporal properties of eleven natural resource real price series from 1870-1990. Recent studies by Ahrens and Sharma [1997], Berck and Roberts [1996], and Slade [1988], among others, find that many nonrenewable resource prices have a stochastic trend. We revisit this issue by employing a Lagrangian Multiplier unit root test that allows for two endogenously determined structural breaks with and without a quadratic trend. Contrary to previous research, we find evidence against the unit root hypothesis for all price series. Our findings support characterizing natural resource prices as stationary around deterministic trends with structural breaks. We additionally show that both pre-testing for unit roots with breaks and allowing for breaks in the forecast model can improve forecast accuracy. Overall, the results in this paper are important in both a positive and normative sense; without an appropriate understanding of the dynamics of a time series, empirical verification of theories, forecasting, and proper inference are potentially fruitless.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Appalachian State University in its series Working Papers with number 05-20.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:apl:wpaper:05-20
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Web page: http://economics.appstate.edu/

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  1. Dimitrios Vougas, 2003. "Reconsidering LM unit root testing," Journal of Applied Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(7), pages 727-741.
  2. Diebold, Francis X & Kilian, Lutz, 2000. "Unit-Root Tests Are Useful for Selecting Forecasting Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 18(3), pages 265-73, July.
  3. Pindyck, Robert S, 1980. "Uncertainty and Exhaustible Resource Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(6), pages 1203-25, December.
  4. Geoffrey Heal, 1976. "The Relationship Between Price and Extraction Cost for a Resource with a Backstop Technology," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 7(2), pages 371-378, Autumn.
  5. Atsushi Inoue & Lutz Kilian, 2005. "In-Sample or Out-of-Sample Tests of Predictability: Which One Should We Use?," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(4), pages 371-402.
  6. Junsoo Lee & Mark C. Strazicich, 2004. "Minimum LM Unit Root Test with One Structural Break," Working Papers 04-17, Department of Economics, Appalachian State University.
  7. Peter C.B. Phillips & Sam Ouliaris & Joon Y. Park, 1988. "Testing for a Unit Root in the Presence of a Maintained Trend," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 880, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  8. Harold Hotelling, 1931. "The Economics of Exhaustible Resources," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 39, pages 137.
  9. Ahrens, W. Ashley & Sharma, Vijaya R., 1997. "Trends in Natural Resource Commodity Prices: Deterministic or Stochastic?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 59-74, May.
  10. Berck, Peter & Roberts, Michael, 1996. "Natural Resource Prices: Will They Ever Turn Up?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 65-78, July.
  11. Pesaran, M. Hashem & Timmermann, Allan, 2005. "Small sample properties of forecasts from autoregressive models under structural breaks," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 129(1-2), pages 183-217.
  12. Zivot, Eric & Andrews, Donald W K, 2002. "Further Evidence on the Great Crash, the Oil-Price Shock, and the Unit-Root Hypothesis," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(1), pages 25-44, January.
  13. Slade, Margaret E., 1982. "Trends in natural-resource commodity prices: An analysis of the time domain," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 122-137, June.
  14. Perron, P, 1988. "The Great Crash, The Oil Price Shock And The Unit Root Hypothesis," Papers 338, Princeton, Department of Economics - Econometric Research Program.
  15. repec:cup:etheor:v:11:y:1995:i:2:p:359-68 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Hamilton, James D., 1996. "This is what happened to the oil price-macroeconomy relationship," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 215-220, October.
  17. Clark, Todd E. & McCracken, Michael W., 2005. "The power of tests of predictive ability in the presence of structural breaks," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 124(1), pages 1-31, January.
  18. Slade, Margaret E., 1988. "Grade selection under uncertainty: Least cost last and other anomalies," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 189-205, June.
  19. Nelson, Charles R. & Plosser, Charles I., 1982. "Trends and random walks in macroeconmic time series : Some evidence and implications," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 139-162.
  20. Robin L. Lumsdaine & David H. Papell, 1997. "Multiple Trend Breaks And The Unit-Root Hypothesis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(2), pages 212-218, May.
  21. Pesaran, M. Hashem & Timmermann, Allan, 2004. "How costly is it to ignore breaks when forecasting the direction of a time series?," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 411-425.
  22. Schmidt, Peter & Phillips, C B Peter, 1992. "LM Tests for a Unit Root in the Presence of Deterministic Trends," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 54(3), pages 257-87, August.
  23. John List, 1999. "Have Air Pollutant Emissions Converged Amongst U.S. Regions?," Natural Field Experiments 00528, The Field Experiments Website.
  24. Amsler, Christine & Lee, Junsoo, 1995. "An LM Test for a Unit Root in the Presence of a Structural Change," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(02), pages 359-368, February.
  25. Nunes, Luis C & Newbold, Paul & Kuan, Chung-Ming, 1997. "Testing for Unit Roots with Breaks: Evidence on the Great Crash and the Unit Root Hypothesis Reconsidered," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 59(4), pages 435-48, November.
  26. Junsoo Lee & Mark C. Strazicich, 2003. "Minimum Lagrange Multiplier Unit Root Test with Two Structural Breaks," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(4), pages 1082-1089, November.
  27. Labson B. Stephen & Crompton Paul L., 1993. "Common Trends in Economic Activity and Metals Demand: Cointegration and the Intensity of Use Debate," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 147-161, September.
  28. Diebold, Francis X & Senhadji, Abdelhak S, 1996. "The Uncertain Unit Root in Real GNP: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1291-98, December.
  29. Lee, Junsoo & Strazicich, Mark C, 2001. " Break Point Estimation and Spurious Rejections with Endogenous Unit Root Tests," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 63(5), pages 535-58, December.
  30. John A. List, 1999. "Have Air Pollutant Emissions Converged Among U.S. Regions? Evidence from Unit Root Tests," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 66(1), pages 144-155, July.
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