# Interaction term negative while main effects are both positive

I'm writing a thesis and encountered a problem. My dependent variable is GINI and my independent variables are logGDPPerCapita and Individualism. I write a paper about the interaction between GDP per capita and Individualism (GDP*individualism). My OLS Model is:Yi = β0 + β1X1i + β2X2i + β3X1iX2i + αXc + εi

Where: Yi = GINI coefficient X1i = GDP per capita X2i = individualism Xc = controls1 εi = error term How can my interaction term (GDP*individualism) be negative if my main effects (GDP&individualism) are both positive? If I correlate GINI versus individualism and GINI versus GDP, I both get a negative correlation while the regression gives a positive coefficient. What do I do wrong or how do I have to interpret this?

Any help would be appreciated.

• Negate the values of GDP and individualism in your model. Now the main effects will be negative. Do you perceive it as problematic that the main effects and the interaction will all be negative? If so, why? If not, then you have no problem.
– whuber
Apr 29, 2020 at 17:10
• i.stack.imgur.com/Z616X.png these are the regression results. It would be better if both main effects would be negative (as it in line with my hypothesis and literature). Can I just say that these main effects are negative on what ground?
– asd
Apr 29, 2020 at 17:14