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Long-term trends in the Real real prices of primary commodities: Inflation bias and the Prebisch-Singer hypothesis

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  • Cuddington, John T

Abstract

Following the Boskin et al., (1996) report, it became widely recognized that price indexes in the U.S. and elsewhere overstate inflation. Svedberg and Tilton (2006) highlighted that this inflation bias may have important implications for estimated long-term trends in nonrenewable resource prices. ST construct an inflation-bias corrected CPI (and PPI) for the U.S. and use their corrected deflator(s) to define a so-called 'real real' price of copper. Their 'real real' price of copper is then used to re-estimate long-term trends in real copper prices. This paper proposes a quick method for obtaining inflation-bias-corrected estimates of long-run trends in real primary commodity prices directly from estimates in the published literature. Our approach obviates the need re-do existing empirical studies using a corrected or 'real real' price of nonrenewable resources. The two approaches are mathematically equivalent.

Suggested Citation

  • Cuddington, John T, 2010. "Long-term trends in the Real real prices of primary commodities: Inflation bias and the Prebisch-Singer hypothesis," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 72-76, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jrpoli:v:35:y:2010:i:2:p:72-76
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Grilli, Enzo R & Yang, Maw Cheng, 1988. "Primary Commodity Prices, Manufactured Goods Prices, and the Terms of Trade of Developing Countries: What the Long Run Shows," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 2(1), pages 1-47, January.
    2. Robert J. Gordon, 2006. "The Boskin Commission Report: A Retrospective One Decade Later," International Productivity Monitor, Centre for the Study of Living Standards, vol. 12, pages 7-22, Spring.
    3. Cuddington, John T., 1992. "Long-run trends in 26 primary commodity prices : A disaggregated look at the Prebisch-Singer hypothesis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 207-227, October.
    4. Svedberg, Peter & Tilton, John E., 2006. "The real, real price of nonrenewable resources: copper 1870-2000," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 501-519, March.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Thomas H.W. Ziesemer, 2014. "Country terms of trade: trends, unit roots, over-differencing, endogeneity, time dummies, and heterogeneity," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(6), pages 767-796, September.
    2. Fernandez, Viviana, 2012. "Trends in real commodity prices: How real is real?," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 30-47.
    3. repec:pal:palcom:v:4:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1057_s41599-017-0060-x is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Svedberg, Peter & Tilton, John E., 2011. "Long-term trends in the Real real prices of primary commodities: Inflation bias and the Prebisch-Singer hypothesis," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 91-93, March.
    5. Henckens, M.L.C.M. & Driessen, P.P.J. & Ryngaert, C. & Worrell, E., 2016. "The set-up of an international agreement on the conservation and sustainable use of geologically scarce mineral resources," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 92-101.
    6. Fernandez, Viviana, 2015. "Commodity price excess co-movement from a historical perspective: 1900–2010," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 698-710.
    7. Henckens, M.L.C.M. & van Ierland, E.C. & Driessen, P.P.J. & Worrell, E., 2016. "Mineral resources: Geological scarcity, market price trends, and future generations," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 102-111.
    8. Fernandez, Viviana, 2014. "Linear and non-linear causality between price indices and commodity prices," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 40-51.

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