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Re: st: cluster robust SE options in 2SLS

From   Austin Nichols <>
Subject   Re: st: cluster robust SE options in 2SLS
Date   Mon, 23 Mar 2009 10:51:30 -0400

Shang Ha <>:

I would ignore the comment from Joshua A Shindell at on more
substantive grounds--the cluster-robust VCE is useful in a huge
variety of situations, of which serial correlation within panel is
merely one instance.  I would even say the majority of cases deserving
of cluster-robust VCE corrections are cross-sectional applications;
for example, any survey, or regression using covariates measured at
different "levels" e.g. individual outcomes regressed on
state/province policy variables.  However, the cluster-robust VCE is
biased downward in "small" samples, i.e. small number of clusters
(also severely unbalanced clusters), so in fact if the cluster-robust
VCE is inappropriate for your case, it will not necessarily "give a
more conservative of an estimate of your standard errors" as Joshua A
Shindell claims--quite the opposite is possible.

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