Modeling NML Using the Area Frame Survey

This report outlines the results of various experiments to model the probability of an area-frame farm not being on the census mailing list (NML) using covariates such as total sales, type of farm, acreage, various operator characteristics (gender, Hispanic status, race, and whether the primaryl occupation of the principal operator is farming), number (if any) of equine on the farm, and, optionally, Area-Frame-Survey stratum. Three sets of experiments were conducted. The ¯rst used California data only. The second used data from three states - Illinois, Indiana, and Iowa, while the third used data from the entire 48 contiguous states (there is no Area Frame Survey in either Alaska or Hawaii). The statistical methodology employed was logistic regression with a modi¯cation of stepwise regression for variable selection. Standard errors were estimated using design- based linearization methods. Conclusions are drawn about the nature of 2002 NML farms. Some are as expected (farms with small total sales are more likely to be NML). Others are surprising (holding all other factors constant, point farms are not sgni¯cantly more likely to be NML than other farms with less than $2,500 in annual sales). A number of methodological problems needing further research are suggested as a result of this study.

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Aug 27 2004
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