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Mixtures of g-priors for bayesian model averaging with economic applications


  • Ley, Eduardo
  • Steel, Mark F.J.


We examine the issue of variable selection in linear regression have a potentially large amount of possible covariates and economic theory offers insufficient guidance on how to select the Model Averaging presents uncertainty. Our main interest here is the effect of the prior on the results, such as posterior inclusion probabilities of regressors and predictive performance. We combine a Binomial-Beta prior on model size with a g addition, we assign a hyperprior to g, as the choice impact on the results. For the prior of Beta shrinkage priors, which covers most choices in the recent literature. We propose a benchmark Beta prior, inspired by earlier findings with fixed g, and show it leads to selection. Inference is conducted through a Markov chain Monte Carlo sampler over model space and g. We examine the performance of the various priors in the context of simulated and real data. For the latter, we consider two important appl economics, namely cross-country growth regression and returns to schooling. Recommendations to applied users are provided.

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  • Ley, Eduardo & Steel, Mark F.J., 2011. "Mixtures of g-priors for bayesian model averaging with economic applications," DES - Working Papers. Statistics and Econometrics. WS ws112116, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Estadística.
  • Handle: RePEc:cte:wsrepe:ws112116

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Martin Feldkircher & Stefan Zeugner, 2012. "The impact of data revisions on the robustness of growth determinants—a note on ‘determinants of economic growth: Will data tell?’," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(4), pages 686-694, June.
    2. Justin L. Tobias & Mingliang Li, 2004. "Returns to Schooling and Bayesian Model Averaging: A Union of Two Literatures," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(2), pages 153-180, April.
    3. David J. Nott & Robert Kohn, 2005. "Adaptive sampling for Bayesian variable selection," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 92(4), pages 747-763, December.
    4. Carlos M. Carvalho & Nicholas G. Polson & James G. Scott, 2010. "The horseshoe estimator for sparse signals," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 97(2), pages 465-480.
    5. Carmen Fernandez & Eduardo Ley & Mark F. J. Steel, 2001. "Model uncertainty in cross-country growth regressions," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(5), pages 563-576.
    6. Antonio Ciccone & Marek Jarociński, 2010. "Determinants of Economic Growth: Will Data Tell?," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(4), pages 222-246, October.
    7. William A. Brock & Steven N. Durlauf & Kenneth D. West, 2003. "Policy Evaluation in Uncertain Economic Environments," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 34(1), pages 235-322.
    8. Eduardo Ley & Mark F.J. Steel, 2009. "On the effect of prior assumptions in Bayesian model averaging with applications to growth regression This article was published online on 30 March 2009. An error was subsequently identified. This not," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(4), pages 651-674.
    9. Fernandez, Carmen & Ley, Eduardo & Steel, Mark F. J., 2001. "Benchmark priors for Bayesian model averaging," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 100(2), pages 381-427, February.
    10. Theo S. Eicher & Chris Papageorgiou & Adrian E. Raftery, 2011. "Default priors and predictive performance in Bayesian model averaging, with application to growth determinants," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(1), pages 30-55, January/F.
    11. Fern ndez, Carmen & Steel, Mark F.J., 2000. "Bayesian Regression Analysis With Scale Mixtures Of Normals," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(01), pages 80-101, February.
    12. Martin Feldkircher & Stefan Zeugner, 2009. "Benchmark Priors Revisited; On Adaptive Shrinkage and the Supermodel Effect in Bayesian Model Averaging," IMF Working Papers 09/202, International Monetary Fund.
    13. Ley, Eduardo & Steel, Mark F. J., 2007. "On the effect of prior assumptions in Bayesian model averaging with applications to growth regression," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4238, The World Bank.
    14. Gneiting, Tilmann & Raftery, Adrian E., 2007. "Strictly Proper Scoring Rules, Prediction, and Estimation," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 102, pages 359-378, March.
    15. Xavier Sala-I-Martin & Gernot Doppelhofer & Ronald I. Miller, 2004. "Determinants of Long-Term Growth: A Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimates (BACE) Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 813-835, September.
    16. Liang, Feng & Paulo, Rui & Molina, German & Clyde, Merlise A. & Berger, Jim O., 2008. "Mixtures of g Priors for Bayesian Variable Selection," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 103, pages 410-423, March.
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    JEL classification:

    • C11 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Bayesian Analysis: General
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

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