Post-Laspeyres; The Case for a New Formula for Compiling Consumer Price Indexes
Consumer price indexes (CPIs) are compiled at the higher (weighted) level using Laspeyres-type arithmetic averages. This paper questions the suitability of such formulas and considers two counterpart alternatives that use geometric averaging, the Geometric Young and the (price-updated) Geometric Lowe. The paper provides a formal decomposition and understanding of the differences between the two. Empirical results are provided using United States CPI data. The findings lead to an advocacy of variants of a hybrid formula suggested by Lent and Dorfman (2009) that substantially reduces bias from Laspeyres-type indexes.
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- Ball, L. & Mankiw, G.H., 1992.
"Relative-Price Change as Aggregate Supply Shocks,"
Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers
1609, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Laurence Ball & N. Gregory Mankiw, 1992. "Relative-Price Changes as Aggregate Supply Shocks," NBER Working Papers 4168, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Laurence Ball & N. Gregory Mankiw, 1993. "Relative-price changes as aggregate supply shocks," Working Papers 93-13, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
- Mick Silver & Christos Ioannidis, 2001. "Intercountry Differences in the Relationship between Relative Price Variability and Average Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(2), pages 355-374, April.
- Silver, Mick & Heravi, Saeed, 2007. "Why elementary price index number formulas differ: Evidence on price dispersion," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 140(2), pages 874-883, October.
- Balk, Bert M., 1983. "Does there exist a relation between inflation and relative price-change variability? : The effect of the aggregation level," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 173-180.
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