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Measuring consumption growth: the impact of new and better products

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  • Peter J. Klenow

Abstract

This study describes how the U.S. government measures real consumption growth and how it tries to take account of a complicating factor: that the goods and services offered to consumers change over time; new products are introduced and old products are improved. The 1996 Boskin Commission critique of this government methodology is described, along with the changes made in response to that critique. Also described is recent research related to how real consumption growth should be measured in the presence of new and better products.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in its journal Quarterly Review.

Volume (Year): (2003)
Issue (Month): Win ()
Pages: 10-23

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmqr:y:2003:i:win:p:10-23:n:v.27no.1

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Keywords: Consumption (Economics);

References

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  1. David E. Lebow & Jeremy B. Rudd, 2001. "Measurement error in the consumer price index: where do we stand?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2001-61, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. Robert Barsky & Mark Bergen & Shantanu Dutta & Daniel Levy, 2001. "What Can the Price Gap between Branded and Private Label Products Tell Us about Markups?," NBER Working Papers 8426, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Ernst R. Berndt & Robert S. Pindyck & Pierre Azoulay, 2000. "Consumption Externalities and Diffusion in Pharmaceutical Markets: Antiulcer Drugs," NBER Working Papers 7772, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Goolsbee, Austan & Klenow, Peter J, 2002. "Evidence on Learning and Network Externalities in the Diffusion of Home Computers," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(2), pages 317-43, October.
  5. Irving Shapiro & Matthew D. Shapiro & David W. Wilcox, 1999. "Quality Improvement in Health Care: A Framework for Price and Output Measurement," NBER Working Papers 6971, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Gort, Michael & Klepper, Steven, 1982. "Time Paths in the Diffusion of Product Innovations," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 92(367), pages 630-53, September.
  7. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1996. "Dealer Price Discrimination in New Car Purchases: Evidence from the Consumer Expenditure Survey," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(3), pages 622-54, June.
  8. Amil Petrin, 2002. "Quantifying the Benefits of New Products: The Case of the Minivan," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(4), pages 705-729, August.
  9. Robert J. Gordon, 2000. "The Boskin Commission Report and its Aftermath," NBER Working Papers 7759, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Bruce W. Hamilton, 2001. "Using Engel's Law to Estimate CPI Bias," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 619-630, June.
  11. Matthew D. Shapiro & David W. Wilcox, 1996. "Mismeasurement in the Consumer Price Index: An Evaluation," NBER Working Papers 5590, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Brent R. Moulton & Karin E. Moses, 1997. "Addressing the Quality Change Issue in the Consumer Price Index," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(1), pages 305-366.
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Cited by:
  1. David McKenzie & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2005. "Buying Less, But Shopping More: Changes In Consumption Patterns During A Crisis," Business School Working Papers buyinglessshop, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.
  2. Ariel Burstein & Martin Eichenbaum & Sergio Rebelo, 2004. "Large Devaluations and the Real Exchange Rate," NBER Working Papers 10986, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Nguyen, Thang, 2005. "Separating Quantity Shock and Quality Innovation in Relative Prices," MPRA Paper 225, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 07 May 2006.
  4. Erzo G.J. Luttmer, 2004. "The size distribution of firms in an economy with fixed and entry costs," Working Papers 633, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  5. Henning Ahnert & Geoff Kenny, 2004. "Quality adjustment of European price statistics and the role for hedonics," Occasional Paper Series 15, European Central Bank.

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