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I haven't been able to find any open source software that does economic modeling or econometric analysis. There's R for statistics, but it doesn't really compare to Stata.

In addition to any Stata replacements out there, is there any good software for macro-economic modeling?

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4 Answers 4

up vote 1 down vote accepted

There is a library for C under the GPL license called gretl.

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The Gretl project provides not just a library but also a stand-alone package with a GUI. –  Jyotirmoy Bhattacharya Mar 1 '11 at 7:08

The key to making R work for you is finding a piece of the R ecosystem that closely matches your problem space.

I suggest taking a look at some of the GUI applications with an R backend as a good starting place like Rattle

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In addition to gretl, regarding economic modelling you may also consider Gekko (also GNU GPL licence). It solves large macroeconomic models, such as for instance the ADAM model used by Danish government agencies for macroeconomic forecasting and planning (ADAM has around 3600 equations). It is also used by the University of Copenhagen for a course on macroeconomic planning. Among other things, Gekko has Gauss-Seidel and Newton solvers, equation browser, graphics, tabelling system, Excel integration, help system and installer. It is written in C#.NET, so it is intended for Windows users (it will run under virtualization software though, has been tested ok with for instance Parallels on a Mac).

Gekko has a command language, with commands for handling and updating timeseries etc. The Gekko command language is simple and easier to learn than for instance R (= strongly functional language). I really like R, and I've tried solving a model like the aforementioned ADAM model in R, but the R Newton solver did not seem too comfortable with this kind of problem.

I am the primary developer of Gekko, so my opinions may be biased. Gekko is not Troll or EViews, but it has been used by government agencies since 2008, and it is free.

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The American Institutes of Research just launched a federally funded, free statistical program called AM Statistical Software that does some of the basic econometric modeling that a package like Stata, SPSS, or SAS does (though its limited to classical hypothesis testing, regression, ML, FA, and some other basic regression-type models...I didn't see any timeseries or multilevel models).

It also includes a free Stat Transfer program to transfer among hundreds of types of data formats.

One downside is the software is Windows only, so I had to test it out via VM Fushion.

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