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Zur Entwicklung der Preisniveaus in Ost- und Westdeutschland: zugleich eine Dokumentation verschiedener Preisniveau-Zeitreihen für das geteilte und für das vereinigte Deutschland

Listed author(s):
  • Heinz Vortmann
  • Jan Goebel
  • Peter Krause
  • Gert G. Wagner

The economic literature to date is underestimating the importance of regional price level differences. Only in the form of "rent indices" are these differences considered in relation to overall quality of life. As experimental estimates by the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs, and Spatial Development (BBSR) show, current price levels in Germany differ substantially both between counties and between eastern and western Germany. And these East-West differences have existed since before German reunification. The present article provides the first consistent documentation of East-West price levels since 1950. The East/West German purchasing power parities last calculated by DIW Berlin (in 1991) prove surprisingly consistent with the corresponding later estimates by the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs, and Spatial Development (BBSR). The two methods lead to very similar results, and both sets of results deviate substantially from the Federal Statistical Office's assumption of identical price levels in East and West Germany after reunification. The article proposes a method to calculate consistent time series for East and West German price levels and purchasing power indices for the years 1950 to 2009. Die Bedeutung regionaler Unterschiede des Preisniveaus wird in den Wirtschaftswissenschaften unterschätzt. Lediglich in Form von "Mietspiegeln" werden regionale Preisniveauunterschiede lebensweltlich berücksichtigt. Wie experimentelle Berechnungen des Bundesinstituts für Bau-, Stadt- und Raumforschung (BBSR) zeigen, gibt es in Deutschland gegenwärtig nennenswerte Preisniveauunterschiede auf der Ebene von Landkreisen. Dadurch ergibt sich auch ein Preisniveauunterschied zwischen Ost- und Westdeutschland. Dieser Ost-West-Unterschied bestanden auch zu Zeiten der deutschen Teilung. Im vorliegenden Aufsatz werden die Ost-West-Preisniveaus seit dem Jahr 1950 erstmals in konsistenter Art und Weise dokumentiert. Die vom DIW Berlin zuletzt (1991) ermittelten Kaufkraftparitäten für Ost und Westdeutschland erweisen sich überraschend kompatibel mit den entsprechenden späteren Berechnungen des Bundesinstituts für Bau-, Stadt- und Raumforschung (BBSR). Die Ergebnisse beider Methoden sind sehr ähnlich und weichen zugleich deutlich von der Annahme des Statistischen Bundesamtes eines nach der Vereinigung einheitlichen Preisniveaus in Ost- und Westdeutschland ab. Es wird eine Vorschlag für die Berechnung von konsistenten Zeitreihen für die Preisniveaus in Ost- und Westdeutschland für die Jahre 1950 bis 2009 gemacht.

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Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 1269.

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Length: 31 p.
Date of creation: 2013
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp1269
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  1. Jan Goebel & Joachim R. Frick & Markus M. Grabka, 2009. "Preisunterschiede mildern Einkommensgefälle zwischen West und Ost," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 76(51/52), pages 888-894.
  2. Peter Krause & Bruce Headey & Roland Habich, 1992. "Einkommensentwicklung der privaten Haushalte in Ostdeutschland," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 59(4), pages 35-40.
  3. Peter Krause, 1994. "Die Einkommen in Ostdeutschland steigen weiter - auch die Einkommensarmut nimmt wieder zu," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 61(51/52), pages 867-872.
  4. Peter Krause, 1993. "Einkommensarmut in Ostdeutschland nimmt nicht mehr zu," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 60(51/52), pages 750-752.
  5. Peter Krause, 1994. "Armut im Wohlstand: Betroffenheit und Folgen," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 88, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
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