(March 31, 2008)

Contact: Rick DelaHaya, Centenary News Services, 318.869.5073

Business School Students Present Papers at Annual Meetings

SHREVEPORT, La.—Frost School undergraduate students Laura Pryor (‘08), Robert James (‘08) and Ryan Landry(‘08) each presented their research at the 2008 annual meetings of the Southwestern Society of Economists, a member of the Federation of Business Disciplines in Houston, March 5 through 8. Landry presented a second paper to the Southwestern Finance Association that was also held at the FBD meetings.

Laura Pryor from Baton Rouge, La. is getting a B.A. with a double major in Political Science and Economics. Her paper is entitled "Market Concentration and the Cost of Attendance in Major League Baseball." Specifically she looks to see if the cost of attending Major League Baseball games is smaller in cities with more than one MLB team as economic theory would predict. She finds that there is not enough competition to hold down prices when she controlled for other variables that affected the attendance costs. The main determinants of the cost of attendance are the players’ salaries, the number of players a team has on the All-Star team and the number of players in the top 10 homerun hitters. She received special guidance from Dr. Elizabeth L. Rankin on the econometrics and from Dr. Harold R. Christensen on MLB and Industrial Organization.

Robert James is from McKinney, Texas and is graduating with a B.A. in Economics and a minor in Political Science. His paper is entitled "Voting Economics: Examining the Factors Influencing American Citizens to Engage in Politics Through the Act of Voting." Both Dr. David J. Hoaas and Dr. Elizabeth L. Rankin assisted as he prepared his paper. Using data for the 50 states plus D.C. to explain the percent of registered voters that voted in the presidential elections in 2000 and 2004, James finds that economic variables play an important role. Homeownership, per capita income and the unemployment rate all have positive effects on voter participation.

Ryan Landry will receive his B.S. with a double major in Finance and Business Economics from Morgan City, La. His economics paper is entitled "Evaluating Violent Crime Rates in Houston Before and After Hurricane Katrina." Landry tests the hypothesis frequently heard in the news after Katrina that the violent crime rate in Houston had increased due to the immigrations from Katrina evacuees. He finds no indication of an increase in the crime rate. In fact, according to his analysis, the crime rate in Houston reached its peak the month before Katrina hit. Dr. Rankin served as his adviser with this paper.

Dr. Barbara Davis served as Landry’s research advisor on his finance paper entitled "Is Mutual Fund Performance Linked to Fund Manager Ownership?" Using SEC filing, his research investigated whether managers make more wealth maximizing decisions for the fund if they have a financial stake in the fund.

The papers presented as a part of The Frost School of Business Undergraduate Student –Faculty Collaborative Research Program are available on compact disk from the Frost School Business Office of the Dean at 318.869.5149.

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