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Estimating Hedonic Models: Implications of the Theory

  • Helen Tauchen
  • Ann Dryden Witte
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    In this paper we consider the conditions under which instrumental variables methods are required in estimating a hedonic price function and its accompanying demand and supply relations. We assume simple functional forms that permit an explicit solution for the equilibrium hedonic price function. The principles are the same for models in which no analytic solution exists, but having the solutions makes the issues far more transparent. The need for instrumental variables estimation is directly analogous for the classical demand and supply model with undifferentiated products and for the hedonic model with differentiated products. In estimating individual demand and supply functions, instrumental variables estimation is required if the consumer and firm unobservables, which give rise to the error terms in the demand and supply functions, are correlated across consumers/firms within a community. In estimating inverse demand/supply functions, which are referred to as bid/offer functions in the hedonic model, instrumental variables estimation is required even if the unobservables are not correlated across agents within a community. If the unobservables are not correlated across agents within a community, then community binaries or the means of observable consumer and firm characteristics can be used as instruments. If the unobservables are correlated then only the latter can be used. The error term in the hedonic price function is often assumed to be uncorrelated with the chosen attributes. This assumption may be reasonable if consumers have quasilinear preferences. If not, then the error term in the price function may affect the utility-maximizing amounts of the attributes. The feasible instruments again depend upon whether the error term is correlated for agents within a community. If not, then community binaries or observed individual characteristics may be used as instruments. If so, then the community binaries are correlated with the error terms and cannot serve as instruments.

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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/t0271.pdf
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    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Technical Working Papers with number 0271.

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    Date of creation: Jul 2001
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    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberte:0271
    Note: TWP
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    1. Murray, Michael P., 1983. "Mythical demands and mythical supplies for proper estimation of Rosen's hedonic price model," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 327-337, November.
    2. Anglin, Paul M & Gencay, Ramazan, 1996. "Semiparametric Estimation of a Hedonic Price Function," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(6), pages 633-48, Nov.-Dec..
    3. Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 1998. "Does Air Quality Matter? Evidence from the Housing Market," NBER Working Papers 6826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Lars Nesheim, 2004. "Equilibrium Sorting of Heterogeneous Consumers Across Locations," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 337, Econometric Society.
    5. Rosen, Sherwin, 1974. "Hedonic Prices and Implicit Markets: Product Differentiation in Pure Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(1), pages 34-55, Jan.-Feb..
    6. Kahn, Shulamit & Lang, Kevin, 1988. "Efficient Estimation of Structural Hedonic Systems," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 29(1), pages 157-66, February.
    7. Cheshire, Paul & Sheppard, Stephen, 1998. "Estimating the Demand for Housing, Land, and Neighbourhood Characteristics," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 60(3), pages 357-82, August.
    8. Mendelsohn, Robert, 1985. "Identifying Structural Equations with Single Market Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(3), pages 525-29, August.
    9. Sheppard, Stephen, 1999. "Hedonic analysis of housing markets," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: P. C. Cheshire & E. S. Mills (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 41, pages 1595-1635 Elsevier.
    10. Berndt, Ernst R. & Showalter, Mark H. & Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 1990. "A theoretical and empirical investigation of the Box-Cox model and a nonlinear least squares alternative," Working papers 3187-90., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    11. Bartik, Timothy J, 1987. "The Estimation of Demand Parameters in Hedonic Price Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(1), pages 81-88, February.
    12. Diamond, Douglas Jr. & Smith, Barton A., 1985. "Simultaneity in the market for housing characteristics," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 280-292, May.
    13. McConnell, K. E. & Phipps, T. T., 1987. "Identification of preference parameters in hedonic models: Consumer demands with nonlinear budgets," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 35-52, July.
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