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Productivity differentials in the U.S. and EU distributive trade sector: statistical myth or reality

  • Timmer, Marcel P.
  • Inklaar, Robert

    (Groningen University)

In this paper we asses whether productivity growth differentials between the U.S. and Europe in the distributive trade sector are real or mainly a statistical myth. New estimates of retail trade productivity are constructed, taking into account purchase prices of goods sold. We also adjust U.S. wholesale productivity growth for the upward bias due to the use of constant-quality prices of ICT-goods sales. We find that multifactor productivity growth in the U.S. has been higher than in Europe after 1995, but that this lead is smaller than suggested by national accounts based estimates. This finding is robust for various productivity measurement models.

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File URL: http://irs.ub.rug.nl/ppn/277350247
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Paper provided by University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research in its series CCSO Working Papers with number 200501.

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Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:dgr:rugccs:200501
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  1. Ark, Bart van & Inklaar, Robert & McGuckin, Robert H., 2003. "ICT and productivity in Europe and the United States," CCSO Working Papers 200311, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
  2. Martin Neil Baily & Jacob Funk Kirkegaard, 2004. "Transforming the European Economy," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 353, May.
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