Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Basic Econometrics
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on February 21, 2000
As a Ph.D. student in finance I'm currently taking my first course on econometrics. Our class text is Greene's Econometric Analysis. The Greene book is great for graduate student level coverage, but when it comes to getting clear answers to my basic questions, I always reach for "Guj." He provides thorough yet highly lucid descriptions of all the key econometric topics. Also, there is a chapter on the more advanced linear algebra approach to econometrics along with good appendices to cover relevant statistics. I wouldn't try to learn econometrics without the Guj.
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on October 24, 1999
This book is very comprehensive and disarmingly simple for everyone who has an idea about what economics is all about and has heard the word "statistics" before in his life. Dozens of detailed examples covering nearly every field of econometrics. Give it a try!
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on April 28, 2000
This book, although much-used, presents considerable problems from the point of view of the student using this as an introductory text for econometrics.
First, the layout is quite dense and does not provide much guidance as to the relative importance of results. It would be far more helpful for the presentation to reflect the logical buildup of an argument to its conclusion.
Instead, although the verbal exposition is usually quite clear, the presentation is a jumble, with many relatively lengthy derivations placed in footnotes! This is bad pedagogigally, as it encourages the student to skip over what are useful (and often not too difficult)parts.
Second, and worse, is the continued use of deviation notation (ie. expressing a random variable in terms of deviation from its expected value) throughout the book. For this reason alone, I would never recommend this textbook for any class (incidentally, can anyone think of another textbook that follows this bizarre notation)? This is because, for the student who wishes to work through all derivations (which I always encourage) it imposes extra time constraints and a need to flick back through the book to check how variables are defined. This is incredibly frustrating and demotivating, and puts many students off econometrics before they've even given it a fair try.
Third, the book reveals what is (to my mind) an unhealthy preoccupation with estimation issues, as opposed to those of data quality. As people like Granger have consistently pointed out, the real issues in 21st century econometrics have to do with what sort of data we have, and what methods are most appropriate in different situations. Gujurati, partly reflecting its long-standing use, merely dwells on the iid specification. However, I should point out in its defence that this third defect is shared by most other introductory (and graduate) textbooks on econometrics.
As stated above, I would never recommend this book, preferring instead Hill's "Introductory Econometrics" which both motivates the student and takes them through the steps and methods they will need to adopt in further econometric studies, and always provides a good reference when it omits proofs and other details.
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on March 29, 2001
I used this book during my first 2 courses of econometrics during the college. Yoo'll know, after reading the first chapters, everything about the basic tool in the field, ols (this could be seen as a problem, because you spend too much time studying too many details; an economist doesn't necessarily need such knowledge and an amateur econometrist should rather begin with a more concise manual). It's an "easy-to-read" book. Every standard student (like myself) should be able to understand everything even if he is going on his own. The problem with this book is that Gujarati wrote it 15 years ago (aprox.); the way of teaching econometrics has evolved, Gujarati's not. It's true; the recent re-editions of the book include several modern topics, such as time series and an introduction to unit roots. But the way regression problems (autocorrelation, heterocedasticity, etcetera) are treated isn't perfectly actualized. A much more modern approach and, as far as I know equally simple, can be found in Johnston and Dinardo's Econometric Methods. Gujarati's is a good idea for those wishing to learn econometrics, but there are better options, such as the one I already mentioned, the Greene and the Hill/Griffiths/Judge's. This book is much better than Maddala's. In conclusion I can say this book is a good option for undergraduate students, but not the best one.
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on September 30, 2009
The 5th edition is not a bad book by any means. It's relatively clear, though at times it loses sight of a more intuitive conceptual approach while exploring mechanics. I've been using this in conjunction with Greene, and definitely find this to be the better of the two. I guess I would put it thus: I expect Greene to be a better reference down the road, but this has been a very helpful educational tool.

It loses a star for two reasons:

1) Organization is terrible. There is one appendix at the back of the book, then a series of appendices at the end of each chapter. You have to expect some flipping around in any text, but this is a but much.

2) I happened to pick up an earlier edition at the campus library for a study session after I accidentally left my own (5th) edition at home, and amazingly, I found the earlier edition to be MUCH better. I'm not sure of the reasons for the change, but the explanations - and the prose itself - were much clearer in the earlier editions. Perhaps the authors wanted to make newer editions more challenging. Either way, at times when I've been stumped deciphering with a new concept, I'll return to the earlier edition and find it crystal-clearly explained. Very odd.

All in all, though, a worthwhile text.
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on September 24, 2004
Econometrics, as the extension of statistics into economics, sends shivers down the spine of most undergraduates. This book is, so far, the best textbook I have seen to teach econometrics. It divides concepts into chapters that are easy to reference separately, and it follows a logical sequence similar to the one in most college-level courses.

In its 4th edition, Gujarati has had much time to improve the method and get comments. However, after having gone through the course and the textbook, I was left with the feeling that there must be a better way to teach econometrics. After learning it, you realize that the concepts are indeed simple, with much complex veneer to scare people away. In a few years, a wise and student-aware professor will write a textbook (call it the Econometrics Holy Grail?) that will make learning econometrics similar to learning basic stats.
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on January 4, 1999
I used this book while I was a student of the Delhi School of Economics. This is the ideal book to start your studies of Econometrics. Infact, I would recommend reading this book before moving on to any area related to Econometrics.
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on September 4, 1999
Usually econometric terms and its implications should be not clear for people who haven't studied economics. This book saves to beginers students and people interested in economics, a lot of work on reading. We used this book, 3 years and have been a great helpful for my job, and teaching. All our universities uses Prof. Gujarati's book in courses of Econometrics
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on April 28, 2000
This book is probably the most praised of all in the pool of undergraduate econometrics texts. It is accessible to a fairly broad range of students with quite different majors (economics, business school, MBA, ...).
I believe there is one crucial problem with Gujarati's text: in introductory chapters it does not explain the sampling process from the statistical point of view, which forms a basis for a more theoretical but still applied approach to studying econometrics. Consequently, the adopted path in the book is necessarily limited to a fairly cook-book approach. Which is attractive for business or MBA students but shouldn't really be praised by would-be economists.
I would prefer Modern Econometrics: An Introduction by Thomas or even Undergraduate Econometrics by Hill/Griffiths/Judge that essentially covers the same material but is not that fat.
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on January 29, 2015
After at least partially reading 15-20 different Econometrics books in pursuit of a PhD degree, I found this one the most helpful go-to book by a large degree. Don't worry about the 'Basic' in the title, the book is not basic and contains most important concepts and they are explained in a language so that a regular, educated person can follow and understand. Many other Econometrics books seem to be written for people that already know everything, this one gives you a chance to learn.
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