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I am researching firm level data with Stata 13. My endogenous variable is (unfortunately only) of binary nature and indicates whether a firm engaged in R&D activities or not (0;1). I use a panel for EU based firms that among others comprises the years 2006,2007,2008 and 2009. I moreover am lucky enough to have a set of moderators (such as firm size, age, industry dummies and quite a few more).

Given the turbulent period, I figured that I might run the risk of foregoing to check whether there might be a structural break following the financial crisis.

In this first attempt, I rely on a random effects discrete choice model. I ran the same regression once before and once after the crisis. In fact, the coefficients of the moderators used change quite a bit in size, significance, and in two cases even in sign. I also incorporate time dummies, and again I find significant coefficients in the years depicted.

I discussed my findings in a small group and - among others - I got the suggestion to plot the residuals over time. I do not quite get how this could indicate a structural break. Moreover I do not know how to do so in Stata 13 and - more specifically - which kind of presentation might be suitable.

What do you think? Is plotting the residuals the way forward here? And if so, how? Moreover, what do you think I could moreover do to make sure I "explain the financial crisis" away (in terms of variance)?

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