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Metodologie di stima dell�economia sommersa: un�applicazione al caso italiano


  • Roberta Zizza

    () (Banca d'Italia)


The paper surveys different approaches to the estimation of the underground economy. First, the focus is on the methodologies adopted by the Italian and French Statistical Institutes, respectively based on the exhaustive estimate of the labour input and on tax compliance data. Secondly, we investigate the currency demand approach; its application to Italian data provides estimates of the value added generated by the underground economy that are substantially consistent with those published by Istat for the period 1992-98, and indicates a significant reduction of this aggregate for the subsequent two years, for which official figures are not available. Finally, we treat the underground economy as a latent variable to be determined through a factor analysis; conclusions emerging from this exercise appear similar to those coming from the previous approaches.

Suggested Citation

  • Roberta Zizza, 2002. "Metodologie di stima dell�economia sommersa: un�applicazione al caso italiano," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 463, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  • Handle: RePEc:bdi:wptemi:td_463_02

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Andrea Brandolini, 1999. "The Distribution of Personal Income in Post-War Italy: Source Description, Data Quality, and the Time Pattern of Income Inequality," Giornale degli Economisti, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, vol. 58(2), pages 183-239, September.
    2. Wolff, Edward N., 1994. "Trends in Household Wealth in the United States: 1962-1983 and 1983-1989," Working Papers 94-03, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
    3. Hayashi, Fumio & Ando, Albert & Ferris, Richard, 1988. "Life cycle and bequest savings A study of Japanese and U.S. households based on data from the 1984 NSFIE and the 1983 survey of consumer finances," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 2(4), pages 450-491, December.
    4. Avery, Robert B & Elliehausen, Gregory E & Kennickell, Arthur B, 1988. "Measuring Wealth with Survey Data: An Evaluation of the 1983 Survey of Consumer Finances," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 34(4), pages 339-369, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Guerino Ardizzi & Carmelo Petraglia & Massimiliano Piacenza & Gilberto Turati, 2011. "Measuring the Shadow Economy with the Currency Demand Approach - A Reinterpretation of the methodology, with an application to Italy," Working papers 22, Former Department of Economics and Public Finance "G. Prato", University of Torino.
    2. Amedeo Argentiero & Michele Bagella & Francesco Busato, 2008. "Money laundering in a two-sector model: using theory for measurement," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 26(3), pages 341-359, December.
    3. Amedeo Argentiero & Carlo Andrea BOLLINO, 2013. "The Mmeasurement of Underground Economy: A Dynamic-Simulation Based Approach," Quaderni del Dipartimento di Economia, Finanza e Statistica 123/2013, Università di Perugia, Dipartimento Economia.
    4. Columba, Francesco, 2008. "The speed of euro adoption," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 249-259, March.
    5. Bruno Chiarini & Elisabetta Marzano, 2007. "Structural and Cyclical Patterns of Underground Labour Input in Italy from 1980 to 2004," Discussion Papers 3_2007, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
    6. Eugenio Gaiotti, 2004. "Pitfalls of monetary policy under incomplete information: imprecise indicators and real indeterminacy," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 488, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    7. Busato; Francesco & Bruno Chiarini & Vincenzo di Maro, 2005. "Directional Congestion and Regime Switching in a Long Memory Model for Electricity Prices," Economics Working Papers 2005-19, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    8. Carlo V Fiorio & Francesco D'Amuri, 2005. "Workers' Tax Evasion in Italy," Giornale degli Economisti, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, vol. 64(2-3), pages 247-270, November.
    9. Barbara Annicchiarico & Claudio Cesaroni, 2016. "Tax Reforms and the Underground Economy: A Simulation-Based Analysis," CEIS Research Paper 366, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 10 Feb 2016.
    10. Bruno Chiarini & Elisabetta Marzano & Friedrich Schneider, 2013. "Tax rates and tax evasion: an empirical analysis of the long-run aspects in Italy," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(2), pages 273-293, April.
    11. Guerino Ardizzi & Carmelo Petraglia & Massimiliano Piacenza & Gilberto Turati, 2014. "Measuring the Underground Economy with the Currency Demand Approach: A Reinterpretation of the Methodology, With an Application to Italy," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 60(4), pages 747-772, December.

    More about this item


    currency demand; underground economy; hidden labour; taxation; exhaustiveness; value added; latent variables;

    JEL classification:

    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes
    • E41 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Demand for Money
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements


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