Measuring and Understanding Productivity in UK Market Services
Many productivity studies, if they cover the service sector, commonly enter a caveat that the data are uncertain or just look at manufacturing. This paper attempts to clarify what UK market-service-sector data are available, whether they should be treated as inaccurate, and what conceptual problems might make measuring service-sector output so hard. Our overall conclusion is that most problems surround financial intermediation and business services. In financial intermediation, national accounts conventions and adjustments make the output data very hard to interpret. In business services many of the output measures are employment based. Elsewhere, for example, retail and wholesale trade, transport, and hotels and restaurants, the main problem is, in practice, lack of collected deflators. Copyright 2006, Oxford University Press.
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