Is the U.S. Aggregate Production Function Cobb-Douglas? New Estimates of the Elasticity of Substitution
I present new estimates of the elasticity of substitution between capital and labor using data from the private sector of the U.S. economy for the period 1948-1998. I first adopt Berndtâ€™s (1976) specification, which assumes that technological change is Hicks neutral. Consistently with his results, I estimate elasticities of substitution that are not significantly different from one. I next show, however, that restricting the analysis to Hicks-neutral technological change necessarily biases the estimates of the elasticity towards one. When I modify the econometric specification to allow for biased technical change, I obtain significantly lower estimates of the elasticity of substitution. I conclude that the U.S. economy is not well described by a Cobb-Douglas aggregate production function. I present estimates based on both classical regression analysis and time series analysis. In the process, I deal with issues related to the nonsphericality of the disturbances, the endogeneity of the regressors, and the nonstationarity of the series involved in the estimation.
|Date of creation:||2004|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||Published in Contributions in Macroeconomics|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Web page: http://www.economics.harvard.edu/
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Acemoglu, Daron, 2002.
"Directed Technical Change,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(4), pages 781-809, October.
- Bentolila Samuel & Saint-Paul Gilles, 2003.
"Explaining Movements in the Labor Share,"
The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics,
De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-33, October.
- Samuel Bentolila & Gilles Saint Paul, 1999. "Explaining movements in the labor share," Economics Working Papers 374, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
- Bentollia, S. & Saint-Paul, G., 1999. "Explaining Movements in the Labor Share," Papers 9905, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros-.
- Bentolila, Samuel & Saint-Paul, Gilles, 1998. "Explaining Movements in the Labour Share," CEPR Discussion Papers 1958, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Robert J. Barro, 2013.
"Inflation and Economic Growth,"
Annals of Economics and Finance,
Society for AEF, vol. 14(1), pages 121-144, May.
- Phillips, P.C.B., 1986.
"Understanding spurious regressions in econometrics,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 311-340, December.
- Peter C.B. Phillips, 1985. "Understanding Spurious Regressions in Econometrics," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 757, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Granger, C. W. J. & Newbold, P., 1974. "Spurious regressions in econometrics," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 111-120, July.
- Douglas Gollin, 2001.
"Getting Income Shares Right,"
Department of Economics Working Papers
2001-11, Department of Economics, Williams College.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:3196325. 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: (Ben Steinberg)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.