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ch01a.ppt
An Introduction to Econometrics
Prepared by Vera Tabakova, East Carolina University

1.1 Why Study Econometrics

1.2 What is Econometrics About

1.3 The Econometric Model

1.4 How Do We Obtain Data

1.5 Statistical Inference

1.6 A Research Format
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-2

Fills a gap between being “a student of economics” and being “a practicing
economist”


Lets you tell your employer:

“I can predict the sales of your product.”

“I can estimate the effect on your sales if your competition lowers its price by $1 per unit.”

“I can test whether your new ad campaign is actually increasing your sales.”
Helps you develop “intuition” about how things work and is invaluable if you go to
graduate school
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-3
Econometrics is about how we can use theory and data from
economics, business and the social sciences, along with tools
from statistics, to answer “how much” type questions.
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-4

CONSUMPTION = f(INCOME)

Qd  f (P, Ps , Pc , INC)

Qs  f (P, Pc , P f )
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-5

A city council ponders the question of how much violent crime will be reduced if an
additional million dollars is spent putting uniformed police on the street.

U.S. Presidential candidate Clinton questions how many additional California
voters will support her if she spends an additional million dollars in advertising in
that state.

The owner of a local Pizza Hut franchise must decide how much advertising space
to purchase in the local newspaper, and thus must estimate the relationship between
advertising and sales.

Louisiana State University must estimate how much enrollment will fall if tuition is
raised by $100 per semester, and thus whether its revenue from tuition will rise or
fall.
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-6

The CEO of Proctor & Gamble must estimate how much demand there will be in
ten years for the detergent Tide, and how much to invest in new plant and
equipment.

A real estate developer must predict by how much population and income will
increase to the south of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, over the next few years, and if it
will be profitable to begin construction of a new strip-mall.

You must decide how much of your savings will go into a stock fund and how much
into the money market. This requires you to make predictions of the level of
economic activity, the rate of inflation and interest rates over your planning horizon.

A public transportation council in Melbourne, Australia must decide how an
increase in fares for public transportation (trams, trains and buses) will affect the
number of travelers who switch to car or bike, and the effect of this switch on
revenue going to public transportation.
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-7

An econometric model consists of a systematic part and a random error

Qd  f (P, Ps , Pc , INC)  e

f ( P, Ps , Pc , INC)  1  2 P  3 Ps  4 Pc  5 INC

Qd  1  2 P  3 Ps  4 Pc  5 INC  e
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-8

1.4.1. Experimental Data

1.4.2. Nonexperimental Data
 time-series form—data collected over discrete intervals of time—for example, the annual
price of wheat in the US from 1880 to 2007, or the daily price of General Electric stock
from 1980 to 2007.
 cross-section form—data collected over sample units in a particular time period—for
example, income by counties in California during 2006, or high school graduation rates
by state in 2006.
 panel data form—data that follow individual micro-units over time. For example, the
U.S. Department of Education has several on-going surveys, in which the same students
are tracked over time, from the time they are in the 8th grade until their mid-twenties.
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-9

Various levels of aggregation:
 Micro - data collected on individual economic decision making units such as individuals,
households or firms.
 Macro - data resulting from a pooling or aggregating over individuals, households or
firms at the local, state or national levels.

Flow or stock:
 Flow - outcome measures over a period of time, such as the consumption of gasoline
during the last quarter of 2006.
 Stock - outcome measured at a particular point in time, such as the quantity of crude oil
held by Exxon in its U.S. storage tanks on April 1, 2006, or the asset value of the Wells
Fargo Bank on July 1, 2007.

Quantitative or qualitative:
 Quantitative - outcomes such as prices or income that may be expressed as numbers or
some transformation of them, such as real prices or per capita income.
 Qualitative - outcomes that are of an “either-or” situation. For example, a consumer either
did or did not make a purchase of a particular good, or a person either is or is not married.
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-10
The ways in which statistical inference are carried out include:

Estimating economic parameters, such as elasticities, using econometric methods.

Predicting economic outcomes, such as the enrollment in 2-year colleges in the U.S.
for the next 10 years.

Testing economic hypotheses, such as the question of whether newspaper
advertising is better than store displays for increasing sales.
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-11
1.
Find an interesting problem or question.
2.
Build an economic model and list the questions (hypotheses) of interest.
3.
Build an econometric model. Choose a functional form and make some
assumptions about the nature of the error term.
4.
Obtain sample data and choose a method of statistical analysis.
5.
Estimate the unknown parameters using a statistical software package. Perform
hypothesis tests and make predictions.
6.
Perform model diagnostics to check the validity of assumptions.
7.
Analyze and evaluate the economic consequences and the implications of the
empirical results. What remaining questions might be answered?
Principles of Econometrics, 3rd Edition
Slide 1-12
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