IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Productivity and the Welfare of Nations

  • Susanto Basu

    (Boston College
    NBER)

  • Luigi Pascali

    ()

    (Boston College)

  • Fabio Schiantarelli

    ()

    (Boston College
    IZA)

  • Luis Serven

    (World Bank)

We show how to relate the welfare of a country's infinitely-lived representative consumer to observable aggregate data. To a first order, welfare is summarized by total factor productivity and by the capital stock per capita. These variables suffice to calculate welfare changes within a country, as well as welfare differences across countries. The result holds regardless of the type of production technology and the degree of market competition. It applies to open economies as well, if total factor productivity is constructed using domestic absorption, instead of gross domestic product, as the measure of output. It also requires that total factor productivity be constructed with prices and quantities as perceived by consumers, not firms. Thus, factor shares need to be calculated using after-tax wages and rental rates and they will typically sum to less than one. These results are used to calculate welfare gaps and growth rates in a sample of developed countries with high-quality total factor productivity and capital data. Under realistic scenarios, the U.K. and Spain had the highest growth rates of welfare during the sample period 1985-2005, but the U.S. had the highest level of welfare.

If 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.

File URL: http://fmwww.bc.edu/EC-P/wp793.pdf
File Function: main text
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Boston College Department of Economics in its series Boston College Working Papers in Economics with number 793.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 28 Mar 2012
Date of revision: 18 Feb 2016
Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:793
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Avenue, Chestnut Hill MA 02467 USA

Phone: 617-552-3670
Fax: +1-617-552-2308
Web page: http://fmwww.bc.edu/EC/
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
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.:

as in new window
  1. Timothy J. Kehoe & Kim J. Ruhl, 2010. "Why Have Economic Reforms in Mexico Not Generated Growth?," NBER Working Papers 16580, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Charles R. Hulten, 1978. "Growth Accounting with Intermediate Inputs," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 45(3), pages 511-518.
  3. Lane, Philip R. & Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria, 2006. "The External Wealth of Nations Mark II: Revised and Extended Estimates of Foreign Assets and Liabilities, 1970-2004," CEPR Discussion Papers 5644, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Kremer, Michael & Onatski, Alexei & Stock, James, 2001. "Searching for prosperity," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 275-303, December.
  5. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J Klenow, 2008. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," 2008 Meeting Papers 121, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Asheim, Geir B, 1994. " Net National Product as an Indicator of Sustainability," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 96(2), pages 257-65.
  7. Philip Lane & Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, 2001. "THE EXTERNAL WEALTH OF NATIONS: Measures of Foreign Assets and Liabilities For Industrial and Developing Countries," Trinity Economics Papers 20014, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
  8. Hulten, Charles R, 1973. "Divisia Index Numbers," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(6), pages 1017-25, November.
  9. Susanto Basu & Luigi Pascali & Fabio Schiantarelli & Luis Serven, 2012. "Productivity and the Welfare of Nations," NBER Working Papers 17971, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Costas Arkolakis & Arnaud Costinot & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 2009. "New Trade Models, Same Old Gains?," NBER Working Papers 15628, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. William D. Nordhaus & James Tobin, 1971. "Is Growth Obsolete?," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 319, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    • William D. Nordhaus & James Tobin, 1972. "Is Growth Obsolete?," NBER Chapters, in: Economic Research: Retrospect and Prospect, Volume 5, Economic Growth, pages 1-80 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • William D. Nordhaus & James Tobin, 1973. "Is Growth Obsolete?," NBER Chapters, in: The Measurement of Economic and Social Performance, pages 509-564 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Guido Sandleris & Mark L.J. Wright, 2011. "The Costs of Financial Crises: Resource Misallocation, Productivity and Welfare in the 2001 Argentine Crisis," NBER Working Papers 17552, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Charles R. Hulten & Paul Schreyer, 2010. "GDP, Technical Change, and the Measurement of Net Income: the Weitzman Model Revisited," NBER Working Papers 16010, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Charles Jones & Pete Klenow, 2010. "Beyond GDP? Welfare Across Countries and Time," Discussion Papers 10-001, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  15. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2010. "A New Data Set of Educational Attainment in the World, 1950-2010," NBER Working Papers 15902, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Susanto Basu & John G. Fernald, 1997. "Aggregate productivity and aggregate technology," International Finance Discussion Papers 593, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  17. Ariel Burstein & Andrew Atkeson, 2009. "Innovation, Firm Dynamics, and International Trade," 2009 Meeting Papers 186, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  18. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : II. New directions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 309-341.
  19. Danny Quah, 1996. "Twin Peaks: Growth and Convergence in Models of Distribution Dynamics," CEP Discussion Papers dp0280, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  20. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2009. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(4), pages 1403-1448.
  21. Ortigueira, Salvador & Santos, Manuel S. & Ladrón de Guevara, Antonio, 1995. "A two-sector model of endogenous growth with leisure," UC3M Working papers. Economics 4160, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
  22. Romer, Paul M, 1986. "Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-37, October.
  23. Sergio T. Rebelo, 1990. "Long Run Policy Analysis and Long Run Growth," NBER Working Papers 3325, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Susanto Basu & John G. Fernald & Nicholas Oulton & Sylaja Srinivasan, 2003. "The Case of the Missing Productivity Growth: Or, Does Information Technology Explain why Productivity Accelerated in the US but not the UK?," NBER Working Papers 10010, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Kohli, Ulrich, 2004. "Real GDP, real domestic income, and terms-of-trade changes," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 83-106, January.
  26. Bhagwati, Jagdish N & Ramaswami, V K & Srinivasan, T N, 1969. "Domestic Distortions, Tariffs, and the Theory of Optimum Subsidy: Some Further Results," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 77(6), pages 1005-10, Nov./Dec..
  27. Mino, Kazuo, 2004. "Weitzman's rule with market distortions," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 307-329, August.
  28. Rogerson, Richard & Wright, Randall, 1988. "Involuntary unemployment in economies with efficient risk sharing," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 501-515.
  29. Quah, Danny T, 1996. "Twin Peaks: Growth and Convergence in Models of Distribution Dynamics," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(437), pages 1045-55, July.
  30. Timothy J. Kehoe & Mark J. Gibson & Kim J. Ruhl & Claustre Bajna, 2011. "Trade Liberalization, Growth, and Productivity," 2011 Meeting Papers 794, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  31. Chetty, Nadarajan, 2009. "Sufficient Statistics for Welfare Analysis: A Bridge Between Structural and Reduced-Form Methods," Scholarly Articles 9748528, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  32. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : I. The basic neoclassical model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 195-232.
  33. Serven, Luis, 1994. "Capital goods imports, the real exchange rate, and the current account," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1298, The World Bank.
  34. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  35. Basu, Susanto & Pascali, Luigi & Schiantarelli, Fabio & Serven, Luis, 2009. "Productivity, Welfare and Reallocation: Theory and Firm-Level Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 4612, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  36. J Sefton & M Weale, 2005. "The Concept of Income in a General Equilibrium," NajEcon Working Paper Reviews 122247000000000844, www.najecon.org.
  37. Bulow, Jeremy I & Summers, Lawrence H, 1986. "A Theory of Dual Labor Markets with Application to Industrial Policy,Discrimination, and Keynesian Unemployment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 4(3), pages 376-414, July.
  38. J. A. Sefton & M. R. Weale, 2006. "The Concept of Income in a General Equilibrium," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(1), pages 219-249.
  39. S.K. Bhutani, 2009. "China and India," India Quarterly: A Journal of International Affairs, , vol. 65(4), pages 383-391, October.
  40. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
  41. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  42. Peter J. Lloyd, 1977. "Two-Stage Expenditure Minimization and some Welfare Applications," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 91(4), pages 531-554.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:793. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Christopher F Baum)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.