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Growth and structural change in Spain, 1850-2000

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  • Prados de la Escosura, Leandro

Abstract

Long run economic progress in modern Spain is assessed in this paper and its comparative performance placed in historical perspective. Over one and a half centuries, income per person rose 15 times. Three main phases can be established: 1850-1950, 1951-1974 and 1975-2000. The finding of growth continuity between mid-nineteenth and mid-twentieth century is at odds with the widespread view of a nineteenth century of failure and a successful twentieth century. Spain underperformed in the long run mostly due to its sluggish growth in the hundred years up to 1950. Higher destruction of human capital than of physical capital during the Spanish Civil War and its aftermath help explain her weaker post-World War II performance. Catching up took place in the late twentieth century, in which the years 1959-74 stand out. Structural change contributed significantly to growth acceleration while lack of exposition to international competition represents a recurrent element of retardation.

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  • Prados de la Escosura, Leandro, 2006. "Growth and structural change in Spain, 1850-2000," IFCS - Working Papers in Economic History.WH wp06-05, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Instituto Figuerola.
  • Handle: RePEc:cte:whrepe:wp06-05
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    Cited by:

    1. Vicente Esteve & Cecilio Tamarit, 2011. "Cointegration with multiple structural breaks: an application to the Spanish environmental Kuznets curve, 1857-2007," Working Papers 1114, Department of Applied Economics II, Universidad de Valencia.
    2. Julio Martínez-Galarraga & Joan R. Rosés & Daniel A. Tirado, 2015. "The Long-Term Patterns of Regional Income Inequality in Spain, 1860-2000," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(4), pages 502-517, April.
    3. George Chouliarakis & Mónica Correa-López, 2009. "Catching-up, then falling behind: Comparative productivity growth between Spain and the United Kingdom, 1950-2004," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 131, Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester.
    4. Álvarez Nogal, Carlos & Prados de la Escosura, Leandro, 2007. "Searching for the roots of retardation : Spain in European perspective, 1500-1850," IFCS - Working Papers in Economic History.WH wp07-06, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Instituto Figuerola.
    5. Alvaredo, Facundo & Saez, Emmanuel, 2006. "Income and Wealth Concentration in Spain in a Historical and Fiscal Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 5836, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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