Is the Time-Series Evidence on Minimum Wage Effects Contaminated by Publication Bias?

25 Pages Posted: 7 Aug 1996 Last revised: 23 May 2021

See all articles by David Neumark

David Neumark

University of California, Irvine - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

William Wascher

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Date Written: June 1996

Abstract

Publication bias in economics may lead to selective specification searches that result in overreporting in the published literature of results consistent with economists' priors. In reassessing the published time-series studies on the employment effects of minimum wages, some recent research has reported evidence consistent with publication bias, and concluded that the most plausible explanation of this evidence is editors' and authors' tendencies to look for negative and statistically significant estimates of the employment effect of the minimum wage, (Card and Krueger, 1995a, p. 242). We present results indicating that the evidence is more consistent with a change in the estimated minimum wage effect over time than with publication bias. More generally, we demonstrate that existing approaches to testing for publication bias may generate spurious evidence of such bias when there are structural changes in some parameters. We then suggest an alternative strategy for testing for publication bias that is more immune to structural change. Although changing parameters may be uncommon in clinical trials on which most of the existing literature on publication bias is based, they are much more plausible in economics.

Suggested Citation

Neumark, David and Wascher, William, Is the Time-Series Evidence on Minimum Wage Effects Contaminated by Publication Bias? (June 1996). NBER Working Paper No. w5631, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=500

David Neumark (Contact Author)

University of California, Irvine - Department of Economics ( email )

3151 Social Science Plaza
Irvine, CA 92697-5100
United States
949-824-8496 (Phone)
949-824-2182 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.socsci.uci.edu/~dneumark/

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

William Wascher

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States
202-452-2812 (Phone)
202-452-3819 (Fax)

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
95
Abstract Views
2,002
rank
329,946
PlumX Metrics