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Can Random Coefficient Cobb-Douglas Production Functions Be Aggregated to Similar Macro Functions?

Author

Listed:
  • Biørn, Erik

    () (Dept. of Economics, University of Oslo)

  • Skjerpen, Terje

    () (Statistics Norway, Research Department)

  • Wangen, Knut Reidar

    () (Statistics Norway, Research Department)

Abstract

Parametric aggregation of heterogeneous micro production technologies is discussed. A four-factor Cobb-Douglas function with normally distributed firm specific coefficients and with log-normal inputs (which agrees well with the available data) is speciffied. Since, if the number of micro units is large enough, aggregates expressed as arithmetic means can be associated with expectations, we consider conditions ensuring an approximate relation of Cobb-Douglas form to exist between expected output and expected inputs. Similar relations in higher-order moments are also derived. It is shown how the aggregate input elasticities depend on the coefficient heterogeneity and the co-variance matrix of the log-input vector and hence vary over time. An implementation based on firm panel data for two manufacturing industries gives estimates of industry level input elasticities and decomposition for expected output. Finally, aggregation errors which emerge when the correct aggregate elasticities are replaced by the expected micro elasticities, are explored.

Suggested Citation

  • Biørn, Erik & Skjerpen, Terje & Wangen, Knut Reidar, 2004. "Can Random Coefficient Cobb-Douglas Production Functions Be Aggregated to Similar Macro Functions?," Memorandum 22/2004, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:osloec:2004_022
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    File URL: http://www.sv.uio.no/econ/english/research/unpublished-works/working-papers/pdf-files/2004/Memo-22-2004.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Erik Biørn & Terje Skjerpen & Knut Reidar Wangen, 2003. "Parametric Aggregation of Random Coefficient Cobb-Douglas Production Functions: Evidence from Manufacturing Industries," Discussion Papers 342, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    2. Erik Biørn & Kjersti-Gro Lindquist & Terje Skjerpen, 2002. "Heterogeneity in Returns to Scale: A Random Coefficient Analysis with Unbalanced Panel Data," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 39-57, July.
    3. Klette, Tor Jakob & Griliches, Zvi, 1996. "The Inconsistency of Common Scale Estimators When Output Prices Are Unobserved and Endogenous," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(4), pages 343-361, July-Aug..
    4. Erik Biorn & Kjerti-Gro Lindquist & Terje Skjerpen, 2003. "Random Coefficients in Unbalanced Panels: An Application on Data from Chemical Plants," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 69, pages 55-83.
    5. 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, May.
    6. Erik Biørn & Kjersti-Gro Lindquist & Terje Skjerpen, 2000. "Micro Data On Capital Inputs: Attempts to Reconcile Stock and Flow Information," Discussion Papers 268, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    7. Stoker, Thomas M, 1993. "Empirical Approaches to the Problem of Aggregation Over Individuals," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(4), pages 1827-1874, December.
    8. Biorn, Erik, 2004. "Regression systems for unbalanced panel data: a stepwise maximum likelihood procedure," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 122(2), pages 281-291, October.
    9. Erik Biørn & Terje Skjerpen, 2002. "Aggregation and Aggregation Biases in Production Functions: A Panel Data Analysis of Translog Models," Discussion Papers 317, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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    2. Markus Eberhardt & Francis Teal, 2010. "Aggregation versus Heterogeneity in Cross-Country Growth Empirics," CSAE Working Paper Series 2010-32, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Productivity.; Panel; Data.; Random; coe±cients.; Log-normal; distribution.; Aggregate; production; function;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • C43 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Index Numbers and Aggregation
    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms

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