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st: variable value is asterisk

From   "Heather Gold" <>
Subject   st: variable value is asterisk
Date   Fri, 28 May 2004 13:04:37 -0400

Dear Fellow Listers:

I've searched the FAQs,etc, but haven't been able to find a way to convert an asterisk (*) in a raw data file to a meaningful dummy variable in Stata. I'm using an -infix- command with dictionary, and use str in front of the variable name, but Stata doesn't read in the * and leaves the column blank. The urban variables listed below have a value of * or blank, indicating the metropolitan area is urban or not.
infix dictionary using msbeaf_02.txt {
str state 26-27
str st_cnty_ssa 30-34
str st_cnty 37-41
str MSA83 43-46
str urban1 47
str MSA84 49-52
str urban2 53
str MSA_3 55-58
str urban3 59
str MSA88 61-64
str urban4 65

Any help greatly appreciated (including an already-created crosswalk of US MSAs to state-counties and flag of whether urban!),

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