Shortages and the Informal Economy in the Soviet Republics: 1965-1989
We measure the informal economy and shortages of consumer goods in the Soviet republics from 1965 to 1989 to estimate the relationships of these two variables. We use fixed-effect model and instrument variable approach and find that the informal economy and shortages reinforce each other. Results indicate that the Soviet central planning system is difficult to sustain in the long run. A substantial heterogeneity across the Soviet republics exists not only in the extent of the informal economy and shortages, but also in the associations of the two variables.
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