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Semiparametric Bayesian inference in smooth coefficient models

  • Gary Koop

    ()

  • Justin Tobias

We describe procedures for Bayesian estimation and testing in both cross sectional and longitudinal data smooth coefficient models (with and without endogeneity problems). The smooth coefficient model is a generalization of the partially linear or additive model wherein coefficients on linear explanatory variables are treated as unknown functions of an observable covariate. In the approach we describe, points on the regression lines are regarded as unknown parameters and priors are placed on differences between adjacent points to introduce the potential for smoothing the curves. The algorithms we describe are quite simple to implement - estimation, testing and smoothing parameter selection can be carried out analytically in the cross-sectional smooth coefficient model, and estimation in the hierarchical models only involves simulation from standard distributions. We apply our methods by fitting several hierarchical models using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY). We explore the relationship between ability and log wages and flexibly model how returns to schooling vary with measured cognitive ability. In a generalization of this model, we also permit endogeneity of schooling and describe simulation-based methods for inference in the presence of the endogeneity problem. We find returns to schooling are approximately constant throughout the ability support and that simpler (and often used) parametric specifications provide an adequate description of these relationships.

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File URL: http://www.le.ac.uk/economics/research/RePEc/lec/leecon/dp04-18.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Leicester in its series Discussion Papers in Economics with number 04/18.

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Date of creation: Oct 2003
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Handle: RePEc:lec:leecon:04/18
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics University of Leicester, University Road. Leicester. LE1 7RH. UK
Phone: +44 (0)116 252 2887
Fax: +44 (0)116 252 2908
Web page: http://www2.le.ac.uk/departments/economics
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  1. McKinley L. Blackburn & David Neumark, 1991. "Omitted-Ability Bias and the Increase in the Return to Schooling," NBER Working Papers 3693, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Taber, Christopher R, 2001. "The Rising College Premium in the Eighties: Return to College or Return to Unobserved Ability?," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(3), pages 665-91, July.
  3. DiNardo, John & Tobias, Justin, 2001. "Nonparametric Density and Regression Estimation," Staff General Research Papers 12020, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  4. Robinson, P M, 1988. "Semiparametric Econometrics: A Survey," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 3(1), pages 35-51, January.
  5. Koop, Gary M & Tobias, Justin, 2004. "Learning About Heterogeneity in Returns to Schooling," Staff General Research Papers 12008, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  6. Shively, Thomas S. & Kohn, Robert, 1997. "A Bayesian approach to model selection in stochastic coefficient regression models and structural time series models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 76(1-2), pages 39-52.
  7. Chib, Siddhartha & Greenberg, Edward, 1995. "Hierarchical analysis of SUR models with extensions to correlated serial errors and time-varying parameter models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 339-360, August.
  8. Thomas C. Buchmueller & Robert G. Valletta, 1996. "The effect of health insurance on married female labor supply," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 96-09, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  9. Koop, G. & Osiewalski, J. & Steel, M. F. J., . "Bayesian efficiency analysis through individual effects: Hospital cost frontiers," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1245, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  10. Smith, Michael & Kohn, Robert, 1996. "Nonparametric regression using Bayesian variable selection," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 317-343, December.
  11. Harvey, A.C. & Koopman, S.J.M., 1999. "Signal Extraction and the Formulation of Unobserved Components Models," Discussion Paper 1999-44, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  12. Gary Koop & Herman K. van Dijk, 1999. "Testing for Integration using Evolving Trend and Seasonals Models: A Bayesian Approach," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 99-072/4, Tinbergen Institute.
  13. Adonis Yatchew, 1998. "Nonparametric Regression Techniques in Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(2), pages 669-721, June.
  14. Koop, G. & Poirier, D., 2000. "Bayesian Variants of Some Classical Semiparametric Regression Techniques," Papers 00-01-22, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  15. Dale J. Poirier, 1995. "Intermediate Statistics and Econometrics: A Comparative Approach," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262161494, June.
  16. McCulloch, Robert & Rossi, Peter E., 1994. "An exact likelihood analysis of the multinomial probit model," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1-2), pages 207-240.
  17. John Cawley & Karen Conneely & James Heckman & Edward Vytlacil, 1996. "Cognitive Ability, Wages, and Meritocracy," NBER Working Papers 5645, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. John F. Geweke & Michael P. Keane & David E. Runkle, 1994. "Statistical inference in the multinomial multiperiod probit model," Staff Report 177, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  19. Tobias, Justin, 2001. "Are Returns to Schooling Concentrated Among the Most Able? A Semiparametric Analysis of the Ability-Earnings Relationships," Staff General Research Papers 12016, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  20. Li, Qi, et al, 2002. "Semiparametric Smooth Coefficient Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(3), pages 412-22, July.
  21. John Cawley & James Heckman & Edward Vytlacil, 1999. "On Policies To Reward The Value Added By Educators," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 720-727, November.
  22. James Heckman & Edward Vytlacil, 2000. "Identifying the Role of Cognitive Ability in Explaining the Level of and Change in the Return to Schooling," NBER Working Papers 7820, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Chou, Y. J. & Staiger, Douglas, 2001. "Health insurance and female labor supply in Taiwan," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 187-211, March.
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