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Economics Working Papers, 2007

Copies may be downloaded on pdf, or hard copies may be requested from Joshua Hall, Working Paper Coordinator.

07-01 Hammond, George W., and Brian J. Osoba.

"Metropolitan Statistical Area Designation: Aggregate and Industry Growth Impacts."

Abstract: The federal Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) periodic release of updated metropolitan statistical area (MSA) definitions frequently garners significant attention from local economic development professionals and policymakers. The interest is grounded, in part, in the common belief that the designation of a region as a new MSA will spur its subsequent growth. The purpose of this paper is to test the hypothesis that the MSA designation influences local growth, using Office of Management and Budget (OMB) designations released since 1980 and data on per capita personal income, population, and employment. Based on results from several methods, including quasiexperimental matching, we find little evidence that the MSA designation has a significant impact on long-term employment or per capita income growth. However, we do find some evidence in favor of a short-run impact on aggregate employment growth and more significant impacts on population growth. We disaggregate employment and find significant short-run impacts on transportation and utilities; retail trade; and government. We find longer-term impacts on services and finance, insurance, and real estate employment growth.

07-02 Suryadipta Roy.

"Is Corruption Anti Libor."

Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of corruption on trade openness in low-income and high-income countries. The results suggest corruption is anti-labor, since it reduces trade in low-income countries and increases trade in high-income countries.

07-03 Justin Ross.

"A Theoretical Model of the Distribution of Teacher Attention under Benchmark Testing."

Abstract: This paper provides a tractable theoretical model designed to capture the targeting incentives created by benchmark testing. Under high-stakes benchmark testing, schools and teachers are judged on the fraction of students that meet some given level of educational attainment. The incentive for teachers is then to allocate their resources towards students who are on the margin of the pass/fail level of educational attainment. This behavior has some empirical support and the aim of the model is to provide a formal means of developing hypotheses for future research. A numerical simulation is used to confirm the model’s ability to capture this targeting behavior.