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An Index of Economic Well-being for Canada

The objective of this paper is to develop an index of economic weel-being for Canada for the period 1971 to 1997 using a framework originally laid out by Osberg (1985). Although the economic well-being of a society depends on the level of average consumption flows, aggregate accumulation of productive stocks, inequality in the distribution of individual incomes and insecurity in the anticipation of future incomes, the weights attached to each component will vary, depending on the values of different observers. It is argued that public debate would improved if there is explicit consideration of the aspects of economic well-being obscured by average income trends and if the weights attached to theses aspects were explicitly open for discussion.

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Paper provided by Dalhousie, Department of Economics in its series Department of Economics at Dalhousie University working papers archive with number 98-08.

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Length: 55 pages
Date of creation: 1998
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:dal:wparch:98-08
Contact details of provider: Postal: Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3H 3J5
Phone: (902) 494-2026
Fax: (902) 494-6917
Web page: http://www.economics.dal.caEmail:


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  1. Burkhauser, Richard V & Smeeding, Timothy M & Merz, Joachim, 1996. "Relative Inequality and Poverty in Germany and the United States Using Alternative Equivalence Scales," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 42(4), pages 381-400, December.
  2. David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald, 1997. "The Rising Well-Being of the Young," NBER Working Papers 6102, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Fortin, N.M., 1992. "Allocation Inflexibilities , Female Labor Supply and Housing Assets Accumulation: Are Women Working to Pay the Mortagage," Cahiers de recherche 9204, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
  4. Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2010. "The Index of Economic Well-Being," Challenge, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 53(4), pages 25-42, July.
  5. Milton Moss, 1973. "Introduction to "The Measurement of Economic and Social Performance"," NBER Chapters, in: The Measurement of Economic and Social Performance, pages 1-22 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Zvi Eckstein & Itzhak Zilcha, 1991. "The Effects of Compulsory Schooling on Growth, Income Distribution and Welfare," Boston University - Institute for Economic Development 20, Boston University, Institute for Economic Development.
  7. Galor, Oded & Zeira, Joseph, 1988. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," MPRA Paper 51644, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 01 Sep 1989.
  8. Mary C. Daly & Greg Duncan, 1998. "Income inequality and mortality risk in the United States: is there a link?," FRBSF Economic Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue oct3.
  9. Lars Osberg, 1996. "Economic Growth, Income Distribution and Economic Welfare in Canada 1975-1994," Department of Economics at Dalhousie University working papers archive econgrow, Dalhousie, Department of Economics.
  10. Sharpe, Andrew & Zyblock, Myles, 1997. "Macroeconomic performance and income distribution in Canada," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 167-199.
  11. Phipps, Shelley & Garner, Thesia I, 1994. "Are Equivalence Scales the Same for the United States and Canada?," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 40(1), pages 1-17, March.
  12. Milton Moss, 1973. "The Measurement of Economic and Social Performance," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number moss73-1, June.
  13. Keuning, Steven, 1998. "A Powerful Link between Economic Theory and Practice: National Accounting [Review Article]," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 44(3), pages 437-46, September.
  14. Knack, Stephen & Keefer, Philip, 1997. "Does Social Capital Have an Economic Payoff? A Cross-Country Investigation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1251-88, November.
  15. Ragan, Christopher, 1998. "On the Believable Benefits of Low Inflation," Working Papers 98-15, Bank of Canada.
  16. Robert J. Blendon, 1997. "Bridging the Gap between the Public's and Economists' Views of the Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 105-118, Summer.
  17. Dan Usher, 1973. "The Measurement of Economic Growth," Working Papers 145, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  18. Lars Osberg, 1998. "Economic Insecurity," Discussion Papers 0088, University of New South Wales, Social Policy Research Centre.
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