Comments on 'Investment Cash Flow Sensitivity: Fact or Fiction?' by Senay Agca and Abon Mozumdar

Graph by Shutterstock.com

Article Highlights

  • .@AEIecon scholars assess the influence of cash flow on investment when controlling for error in Tobin’s Q.

    Tweet This

  • .@AEIecon’s Hassett and Oliner respond to “Investment Cash Flow Sensitivity: Fact or Fiction?" by Agca & Mozumdar

    Tweet This

In Cummins, Hassett, and Oliner (2006), we assessed the influence of cash flow on investment when controlling explicitly for measurement error in Tobin's Q. We showed that the cash-flow effects often found in other studies disappeared after controlling for this measurement error. We also showed that a measure of Q based on analyst forecasts of firm-level earnings does a better job of capturing the fundamentals that drive investment spending than does the usual measure of Q based on stock prices.

Agca and Mozumdar (2012), henceforth AM, assert that errors in our data and econometric methodology are responsible for both of our key findings. AM identify three alleged problems with our work: (a) that we may have misdated the cash-flow series in our dataset, (b) that the set of instruments we use is too restrictive, and (c) that our analyst-based measure of Q is flawed.

As discussed below, we do not find AM's critique to be compelling. First, AM provide no convincing evidence to support the claim that our cash-flow series was misdated. Second, even when AM modify our data to correct this alleged problem, use their preferred instruments, and substitute a different analyst-based measure of Q, their results do not overturn the central findings in our paper. We cannot emphasize this point strongly enough: When AM use our dataset, modified as they see fit, they do not reverse our results. Only when they construct their own dataset do their results differ substantially from those in our paper. Those results may be of interest in their own right, but they do not constitute a rebuttal of our findings.

 

Also Visit
AEIdeas Blog The American Magazine
About the Author

 

Kevin A.
Hassett

 

Stephen D.
Oliner

What's new on AEI

How the Common Core went wrong
image Election countdown: The mood, measurements, and mechanics
image Rubio's defense speech: Fearless, informed, and refreshing
image Sorry Kerry, there is little role for Iran in fighting ISIS
AEI on Facebook
Events Calendar
  • 22
    MON
  • 23
    TUE
  • 24
    WED
  • 25
    THU
  • 26
    FRI
Monday, September 22, 2014 | 2:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Policy implications of the new US labor market normal

We welcome you to join us as a panel of economists discuss US wage and price prospects in the coming months and the implications for the Federal Reserve’s current unorthodox monetary policy.

Friday, September 26, 2014 | 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
#ModiInUS: Can Modi’s visit to the White House put US-India relations back on track?

Tune in for this Google Hangout discussion with three leading experts about the implications of the Obama-Modi summit. Tweet your questions and comments to @AEI with #ModiInUS.

No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled today.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.