The Impact of Economic Freedom on Startups with Alicia Plemmons
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- Abstract: The decision to start an entrepreneurial activity largely depends upon an entrepreneur’s institutional setting. Economic freedom is a widely used measure of institutional quality. Ample studies find a positive association between economic freedom and entrepreneurship; however, these studies have been limited to finding correlative relationships and have not determined a consistent set of relevant covariates. In this paper, startup density, provided by the Kauffman Startup Activities Index, proxies startup entrepreneurship while the Economic Freedom of North America index proxies economic freedom. This paper provides causal insights into economic freedom and entrepreneurship in the United States from 2005 to 2015 using a post-double-selection LASSO method. We find that increases in regulatory freedom are likely to cause significant increases in startup density of entrepreneurial activities. In contrast, increases in freedoms of government spending and taxes cause decreases in startup density.
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- Abstract: Public choice literature divides the rationality of voting between instrumental and expressive. In this paper, we take the Vermont legislature in passing the H. 57 bill as a case to explain some of the determinants of expressive voting empirically. The H.57 bill declares that no government entity can interfere with, or restrict, a consenting individual’s right to abortion care across the entire gestation period. However, the bill has not changed the previously states quo of the state towards abortion rights. Thus, it creates a situation in which we can analyze the legislator’s voting behavior through the lens of expressive voting framework. We utilize a high dimensional dataset and post-double-selection LASSO method to explain the channels that influence the expressive voting on the H. 57 bill. We web scrape the lower and upper chamber voting data on H.57 bill and use the 2017 American Community Survey 5-year estimates to retrieve 89 different socioeconomic, housing, and demographic characteristics of State Legislative Districts. Our results suggest channels of poverty, gender, and population diversity are some crucial mechanisms.
Does Scope of Practice Affect Mobility of Nurse Practitioners Serving Medicare Beneficiaries? with Alicia Plemmons
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- Abstract: The shortage of nurse practitioners (NPs) in the United States has broadly decreased access, decreased quality, and increased cost of care for an aging population in both metro and rural areas. Some state policymakers are trying to address the shortage by expanding NPs’ scope of practice (that is, their autonomy to order tests, to prescribe medications, to diagnose patients, and to initiate and manage treatments). We estimate the impact of expanded NP scope of practice on the mobility decisions of NPs serving Medicare beneficiaries. Since these expansions have been at the state level, it is important for policy evaluation to know whether the legal differences in NPs’ roles affect where they decide to both live and practice. We identify NPs’ location decisions between 2014 and 2017 by gleaning their National Provider Identifiers from Part D Prescriber Public Use File data. Then we examine whether NPs’ movement from restrictive-practice to full-practice states increased over time. We find that in a given year, NPs in restrictive-practice states are both 0.46 percent more likely to move out of state (compared to NPs in other states) and 5.33 percent less likely to move to other restrictive states than to nonrestrictive states. Our estimates demonstrate NPs’ preference for practicing in states with full scope of practice.
Quantifying the Announcement Effects in the U.S. Lumber Futures Market with Zarina Ismailova, Xiaoli Etienne, and Fabio Mattos
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- Abstract: The impact of information release from public report announcements has been widely investigated in many commodity markets, but little attention has been paid to the lumber market. In this paper, we use generalized autoregressive conditional heteroskedasticity (GARCH) models to examine the effect of two housing market reports, namely the New Residential Construction (Housing Starts) and the New Residential Sales reports, on the U.S. lumber futures market from 2000 to 2017. Our results suggest that the housing starts report indeed affects lumber market volatility, while the new home sales report exerts a minor impact. We further find that the effect of the two reports decreases with inventory levels and differs depending on the nature of the news. When the level of inventory is low, larger-than-expected housing starts has a more substantial effect than lower-than-expected housing starts. During periods of abundant stocks, however, lower-than-expected housing starts increase the volatility more than larger-than-expected news. For the new home sales reports, we find that while lower-than-expected sales do not affect lumber price volatility, larger-than-expected sales do increase the volatility.
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- Abstract: In 2012, Vermont became the first state in the US to ban hydraulic fracturing for natural gas and oil production despite having zero known natural gas reserves. We evaluate the role of legislator and median voter characteristics on Vermont General Assembly voting outcomes on Act 152, which essentially bans fracking in the state. Using a double-selection post-Least Absolute Shrinkage and Selection Operator approach, we find evidence that campaign donations and being a member of the Democratic Party are positively related to voting to ban fracking. Median voter characteristics appear not to play an essential role in shaping legislator voting behaviour, corroborating the theory of expressive voting on the decision to ban fracking in Vermont.
Possible Decision Rules to Allocate Quotas and Reservations to Ensure Equity for Nepalese Poor with Nabraj Lama
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- Abstract: Government of Nepal provides quotas and reservations for women, indigenous nationalities, Madhesi, untouchables, disables and people of backward areas. These statuses are not homogenous in economic sense. We proposed few other decision trees (rules) that can predict household poverty in Nepal based on 14,907 household observations employing classification and regression tree (CART) approach. These decision rules were based on few practically answerable questions (for respondents) and can be cross checked easily by the enumerators. We modeled 5 different scenarios that respondents were likely to answer the asked questions. These decision rules were 94% to in worst-case scenario 70% accurate in out-of-sample dataset. These proposed meaningful decision rules can be helpful on policy making and implementation that relate to positively discriminate (quota and reservation) for those who lie below poverty line.
Federal Regulations and U.S. Energy Sector Output with Joshua Hall | Paper | BibTeX
Electricity consumption and economic growth: empirical evidence from a resource-rich landlocked economy with Rabindra Nepal and Kishor Sharma | Paper | BibTeX
Book review: Currency Politics–The Political Economy of Exchange Rate Policy | Download