12Displaying Empirical Distributions of Conditional Quantile Estimates: An Application of Symbolic Data Analysis to the Cost Allocation Problem in Agriculture

This chapter uses the symbolic data analysis tools in order to display and analyze the conditional quantile estimates, with an application to the cost allocation problem in agriculture. After recalling the conceptual framework of the estimation of agricultural production costs, the first part presents the empirical data model, the quantile regression approach and the interval data techniques used as symbolic data analysis tools. The second part presents the comparative analysis of the econometric results for wheat between 12 European member states, using principal component analysis and hierarchic clustering of estimates and range of estimation intervals, discussing the relevance of the displays obtained for intercountry comparisons based on specific productivity.

12.1. Conceptual framework and methodological aspects of cost allocation

Successive reforms of the common agricultural policy, as well as integration of the new member state agricultures resulting from enlargement of the European Union (EU) have raised recurring needs for estimating costs of production of major agricultural products both in the context of competitive markets as in markets subject to regulation. The analysis of agricultural production costs, whether retrospective or prospective, is also a tool for analyzing margins for farmers. It allows us ...

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