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Heterogeneity in Returns to Scale: A Random Coefficient Analysis with Unbalanced Panel Data

This paper analyses the importance of scale economies by means of unbalanced plant-level panel data from three Norwegian manufacturing industries. Focus is on heterogeneous technologies, and unlike most previous work on micro data, the model description includes heterogeneity in both the scale properties (the slope coefficients) and the intercept term, represented by random coefficients in the production function. Three (nested) functional forms are investigated: the Translog, an extended Cobb-Douglas, and the strict Cobb-Douglas. Although constant or weakly increasing returns to scale is found for the average plant, the results reveal considerable variation across plants. Variations in both input and scale elasticities are to a larger extent due to randomness of the production function parameters than to systematic differences in the input mix.

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Paper provided by Statistics Norway, Research Department in its series Discussion Papers with number 292.

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Date of creation: Dec 2000
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Handle: RePEc:ssb:dispap:292
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  1. 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.
  2. Matyas, Laszlo & Lovrics, Laszlo, 1991. "Missing observations and panel data : A Monte-Carlo analysis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 39-44, September.
  3. Badi H. Baltagi & Seuck H. Song & Byoung C. Jung, 2002. "A comparative study of alternative estimators for the unbalanced two-way error component regression model," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 5(2), pages 480-493, 06.
  4. Erik BIORN & Kjerti-Gro LINDQUIST & Terje SKJERPEN, 2003. "Random Coefficients in Unbalanced Panels: An Application on Data from Chemical Plants," Annales d'Economie et de Statistique, ENSAE, issue 69, pages 55-83.
  5. 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.
  6. Donald W. K. Andrews, 1999. "Estimation When a Parameter Is on a Boundary," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(6), pages 1341-1384, November.
  7. Hsiao, Cheng, 1975. "Some Estimation Methods for a Random Coefficient Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 43(2), pages 305-25, March.
  8. Mundlak, Yair, 1996. "Production Function Estimation: Reviving the Primal," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(2), pages 431-38, March.
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