The International Comparison Program: Current Status and Problems
In: International Economic Transactions: Issues in Measurement and Empirical Research
AbstractThis paper reviews the International Comparison Program (ICP), a worldwide effort to produce international comparisons of real GDP and its components and purchasing power parities of currencies (PPPs). The robustness of results and future work are considered. A generous estimate of margins of uncertainty in the benchmark estimates might be 20-25 per cent for low-income countries and 7 per cent for high-income countries. The errors in extrapolations to countries not covered by the surveys could go as high as 30-35 per cent. That is still a small range of error compared to that stemming from the use of exchange rates to convert own-currency to common currency measures of output. Furthermore, exchange rate conversions are even more sensitive to methodology than PPP conversions. The notion that exchange comparisons rest on a simple and transparent procedure using standard market data is illusory. The future of ICP measures seems assured in Europe, particularly in the European Community. The prospects for systematic worldwide comparisons do not look as bright. A renewed effort by the United Nations Statistical Office and the World Bank would be needed to maintain an ICP with comprehensive coverage and comparable methods in all major regions.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
This chapter was published in:
This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 8437.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Other versions of this item:
- Irving B. Kravis & Robert E. Lipsey, 1992. "The International Comparison Program: Current Status and Problems," NBER Working Papers 3304, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Hill, T P, 1977. "On Goods and Services," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 23(4), pages 315-38, December.
- Irving B. Kravis & Robert E. Lipsey, 1982. "Towards an Explanation of National Price Levels," NBER Working Papers 1034, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Peter Hooper & Elizabeth Vrankovich, 1995. "International comparisons of the levels of unit labor costs in manufacturing," International Finance Discussion Papers 527, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Magnus Blomström & Linda S. Goldberg, 2001. "Introduction to "Topics in Empirical International Economics: A Festschrift in Honor of Robert E. Lipsey"," NBER Chapters, in: Topics in Empirical International Economics: A Festschrift in Honor of Robert E. Lipsey, pages 1-14 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Leandro Prados de la Escosura, 2010.
"Improving human development: a long-run view,"
Working Papers in Economic History
wp10-07, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Historia Económica e Instituciones.
- Charles P. Thomas & Jaime Marquez & Sean Fahle, 2008. "Measuring U.S. international relative prices: a WARP view of the world," International Finance Discussion Papers 917, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Jaime Marquez & Charles Thomas & Corinne Land, 2012. "International relative price levels: a look under the hood," International Finance Discussion Papers 1055, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Stockman, Alan C & Tesar, Linda L, 1995.
"Tastes and Technology in a Two-Country Model of the Business Cycle: Explaining International Comovements,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 168-85, March.
- Alan C. Stockman & Linda L. Tesar, 1991. "Tastes and technology in a two-country model of the business cycle: explaining international co-movements," Working Paper 9019, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
- Alan C. Stockman & Linda L. Tesar, 1995. "Tastes and Technology in a Two-Country Model of the Business Cycle: Explaining International Comovements," NBER Working Papers 3566, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- G.A. Meagher, 1993.
"The International Comparison Project as a Source of Private Consumption Data for a Global Input-Output Model,"
Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre Working Papers
ip-62, Victoria University, Centre of Policy Studies/IMPACT Centre.
- Meagher, G. A., 1995. "The International Comparison Project as a source of private consumption data for a global input-output model," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 111-132, March.
- Levine, Ross & Renelt, David, 1991.
"A sensitivity analysis of cross-country growth regressions,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
609, The World Bank.
- Levine, Ross & Renelt, David, 1992. "A Sensitivity Analysis of Cross-Country Growth Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 942-63, September.
- Milka S. Kirova & Robert E. Lipsey, 1997. "Does the United States invest "too little?"," Working Papers 1997-020, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
- Ahmad, Sultan, 1992. "Regression estimates of per capital gross domestic product based on purchasing power parities," Policy Research Working Paper Series 956, The World Bank.
- Robert E. Lipsey & Birgitta Swedenborg, 1996. "The High Cost of Eating: Agricultural Protection and International Differences in Consumer Food Prices," NBER Working Papers 4555, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Michaël Freudenberg & Deniz Ünal-Kesenci, 1994. "French and German Productivity Levels in Manufacturing: A Comparison Based on the Industry-of-Origin Method," Working Papers 1994-10, CEPII research center.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.