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Aggregate Investment In The People'S Republic Of China: A Comment

  • Jesus Felipe

    ()

This comment raises three main issues about He and Qin's (2004)attempt at modeling investment in the PRC. The first is this author's skepticism about the general applicability of the neoclassical model of investment to the PRC. Second, that their model for business investment, based on the neoclassical theory of investment, can be viewed as an approximation to an accounting identity derived by manipulating two other identities, namely, that of the capital share in output, and that of the motion of the capital stock. It is shown that the difference between He and Qin's equation and the identity is simply yhat they use the rental price of capital, while the identity relies on the profit rate. At best, all their analysis would indicate is that rental price of capital and profit rate are different. It is also argued that the empirical results are not clearly related to the supposed theoretical model. Based on this, the conclusion is that the policy implications of He and Qin's alleged model are somewhat dubious. Third, He and Qin's equation for government investment introduces the deviations of output from the long-run trend as an explanatory variable, estimated using an aggregate production function. The problems underlying this latter concept make the estimation of the output trend using this method a questionable exercise. Also, the empirical results suffer from serious problems of interpretation.

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Paper provided by Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University in its series CAMA Working Papers with number 2005-17.

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Length: 21 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2005-17
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  1. Holz, Carsten A., 2002. "Long live China's state-owned enterprises: deflating the myth of poor financial performance," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 493-529.
  2. Chow, G.C., 1990. "Capital Formation And Economic Growth In China," Papers 67, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Discussion Paper.
  3. Chirinko, Robert S, 1993. "Business Fixed Investment Spending: Modeling Strategies, Empirical Results, and Policy Implications," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(4), pages 1875-1911, December.
  4. Glyn, Andrew, 1997. "Does Aggregate Profitability Really Matter?," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(5), pages 593-619, September.
  5. Eckhard Hein & Carsten Ochsen, 2003. "Regimes of Interest Rates, Income Shares, Savings and Investment: A Kaleckian Model and Empirical Estimations for some Advanced OECD Economies," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(4), pages 404-433, November.
  6. Rebelo, Sergio, 1991. "Long-Run Policy Analysis and Long-Run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 500-521, June.
  7. Jesus Felipe & Franklin M. Fisher, 2003. "Aggregation in Production Functions: What Applied Economists should Know," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(2-3), pages 208-262, 05.
  8. Robert S. Chirinko, 1993. "Business fixed investment spending: a critical survey of modeling strategies, empirical results, and policy implications," Research Working Paper 93-01, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  9. Song, Haiyan & Liu, Zinan & Jiang, Ping, 2001. "Analysing the determinants of China's aggregate investment in the reform period," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(2-3), pages 227-242.
  10. Blecker, Robert A, 1989. "International Competition, Income Distribution and Economic Growth," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(3), pages 395-412, September.
  11. Sun, Laixiang, 1998. "Estimating Investment Functions Based on Cointegration: The Case of China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 175-191, March.
  12. Labini, Paolo Sylos, 1995. "Why the interpretation of the Cobb-Douglas production function must be radically changed," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 485-504, December.
  13. Jesus Felipe & Carsten Holz, 2001. "Why do Aggregate Production Functions Work? Fisher's simulations, Shaikh's identity and some new results," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(3), pages 261-285.
  14. Simon, Herbert A, 1979. " On Parsimonious Explanations of Production Relations," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 81(4), pages 459-74.
  15. Jesus Felipe & F. Gerard Adams, 2005. ""A Theory of Production" The Estimation of the Cobb-Douglas Function: A Retrospective View," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 31(3), pages 427-445, Summer.
  16. Lewis, William W., 2004. "The Power of Productivity," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 1, number 9780226476766, May.
  17. Hendry, David F., 1995. "Dynamic Econometrics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198283164.
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