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Star Wars: The Empirics Strike Back

Abstract : Using 50,000 tests published in the AER, JPE, and QJE, we identify a residual in the distribution of tests that cannot be explained solely by journals favoring rejection of the null hypothesis. We observe a two-humped camel shape with missing p-values between 0.25 and 0.10 that can be retrieved just after the 0.05 threshold and represent 10-20 percent of marginally rejected tests. Our interpretation is that researchers inflate the value of just-rejected tests by choosing "significant" specifications. We propose a method to measure this residual and describe how it varies by article and author characteristics. (JEL A11, C13)
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Contributor : Patrice Cacciuttolo <>
Submitted on : Friday, January 27, 2017 - 12:14:51 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, October 3, 2020 - 3:14:32 AM


  • HAL Id : hal-01447851, version 1


Abel Brodeur, Mathias Lé, Marc Sangnier, Yanos Zylberberg. Star Wars: The Empirics Strike Back. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, 2016, 8 (1), pp.1--32. ⟨hal-01447851⟩



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