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Regression analysis. A set of statistical techniques, the purpose of which is to quantify the relationship between two or more variables. The object of this may be to permit quantitative prediction or forecasting, or simply to apply the techniques of statistical inference to find whether or not the variables can be expected to be closely related in the population of items under study. It also permits different hypotheses to be tested about the forms of the relationship and the variables which should be included in it. In these respects, it is clearly of considerable importance in economics, and is in fact the major tool of econometrics. Much econometric theory has been concerned with the theoretical problems arising out of the application of classical regression models, based on certain quite stringent assumptions, to economic data for which those assumptions do not necessarily hold. Most of applied’ econometrics is concerned with the measurement and testing of economic relationships using regression techniques. Precisely as in correlation, to which it bears a very close relation, regression analysis is concerned with measuring statistical association only, and does not in itself imply causation. auto-correlation; least squares regression; multicollinearity.

Regression model regression analysis.

Regressive tax. A tax which takes a decreasing proportion of income as income rises.

Regulation. Government policy that monitors and controls the economic activities of certain types of private enterprise. Such policy arises because of the need to prevent the abuses of unrestrained monopoly power or because certain outputs are characterized as public goods or generate externalities. In the United States public utilities are governed by regulation because they are permitted to operate as monopolies in a geographic area. Railways have been regulated since 1887, and since then airlines, pipelines and road transport have also come under various government regulations.

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