Our Summer 2018 Issue

On behalf of the Comparative Advantage Editorial Board, we are honored to present the sixth volume, Summer Issue of the Stanford Undergraduate Economics Journal. Through the years, Comparative Advantage has changed and expanded to include an online blog in addition to our bi-yearly issues, staying true to our mission of providing students a platform to showcase… Continue reading Our Summer 2018 Issue


Purchasing Policy: The Effect of Political Action Committee Campaign Contributions from the Agribusiness Sector on Support Mechanisms for Individual Crop and Product Producers

By Rebecca Sobel, Princeton University -- In this paper, I analyze data on agricultural producer support mechanisms and agribusiness Political Action Committee campaign contributions from 1998 to 2016 to deter- mine the extent to which lobbying on behalf of any particular crop or agricultural product is translated into government transfers back to its producers. I proceed with ...


Vector Autoregressive Modeling of Interest Rate Shocks on Bank Balance Sheets: A Comparative Study

By Sara Diressova, Princeton University -- Di Tella and Kurlat (2017) and Drechser et al. (2017a) study the effects of a nominal interest rate shock on various bank balance sheet variables. I study the same relationships using a VAR model, to understand them over multiple periods of time, without assumptions of exogeneity, and with clear interactions between variables through impulse response functions (Hamilton 1994). I find that ...


BLOG: Employment Effects of Minimum Wage Increases – A Matched Pairs Design Using US Data

By Eric Karsten, Chong An Ong, Immanuel Adriana Rakshana, and Arushi Saksena, University of Chicago  -- The minimum wage is a contentious issue, with proponents arguing that it is required to protect the wage security of low-income earners, and opponents arguing that it places downwards pressure on employment in the labor market. Our paper uses a differences in differences regression model, similar to the one used in Card & Krueger(1993) to estimate the unemployment effects of a minimum wage increase.


The Economic Impact of Psychological Distress on Former Child Soldiers

By Jonathan Kaufmann, American University -- While previous research demonstrates a significant negative relationship between post-traumatic stress disorder and earnings among adult veterans in the United States, a similar connection for children in developing nations has not been established. The literature indicates that both endogeneity and sample-selection biases are inherent in this relationship. This paper used


BLOG: Market Distorting Moral Hazard of Dodd-Frank’s Title II: The Costs of Inefficient Capital Markets

By Charles LeSueur, Vassar College -- The purpose of this paper is to analyze whether Title II of the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank) effectively fulfills the stated goals of ending “too big to fail”, “no more taxpayer-funded bailouts”, and decreasing systemic risk.  I argue that Title II institutionalized taxpayer-funded bailouts under different language and increased systemic risk ...


BLOG: Expert Opinion and Restaurant Pricing: Quantifying the Value of a Michelin Star

By Carly Shin, The George Washington University. -- This paper investigates the relationship between expert ratings and the restaurant market. Specifically, this paper aims to broaden our understanding of the experience goods markets by looking at the effects of both having an expert-awarded Michelin star and earning or losing a Michelin star on New York City restaurant prices.


BLOG: Is Finance Making Geography Increasingly Insignificant?

By Yuxiang Hou, College of William and Mary -- This paper attempts to revisit “the end of geography” debate by incorporating both established theoretical frameworks and the latest empirical evidence. It argues that for five reasons finance is not making geography increasingly insignificant. However, in the long run, things may be different.