An Empirical Examination of Shift-Share Instruments

56 Pages Posted: 29 Apr 2018 Last revised: 10 Jan 2020

See all articles by Daniel Broxterman

Daniel Broxterman

Florida State University, College of Business

William D. Larson

Federal Housing Finance Agency

Date Written: January 8, 2020

Abstract

Bartik's (1991, 1993) approach to identifying shocks in demand to regional economies has been used extensively for nearly thirty years. We chronicle the development of Bartik-type shift-share instruments and examine the empirical performance of alternative versions that use different combinations of national shift and local share variables in their construction. We offer three main findings. First, instruments constructed from shares that omit employment in non-traded sectors empirically dominate versions that include total employment. Second, industrial sectors with high average shares and low variation across areas are more likely to be non-traded and endogenous. This suggests placing large weights on non-traded sector shares worsens both relevance and potential endogeneity. Finally, we demonstrate national shifters other than employment, such as prices and wages, can be used to construct instruments with unique and relevant explanatory power.

Keywords: Regional Dynamics, Urban Dynamics, Identification, Measurement

JEL Classification: R10, R21, R23

Suggested Citation

Broxterman, Daniel and Larson, William D., An Empirical Examination of Shift-Share Instruments (January 8, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3160999 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3160999

Daniel Broxterman (Contact Author)

Florida State University, College of Business ( email )

821 Academic Way
RBA 417
Tallahassee, FL 32306-1110
United States
8506448221 (Phone)

William D. Larson

Federal Housing Finance Agency ( email )

400 7th Street SW
Washington, DC 20552
United States

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