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Does the shadow economy raise observed aggregate efficiency? A cross-country comparison




We analyze how adding the shadow economy to official output figures affects technical efficiency. We find that this only slightly affects the ranking of efficiency scores, but increases average efficiency. Our results are robust to the functional form of the production technology and the adjustment of labor to account for years of schooling.

Suggested Citation

  • Pierre-Guillaume Méon & Friedrich G. Schneider & Laurent Weill & Axel Dreher, 2006. "Does the shadow economy raise observed aggregate efficiency? A cross-country comparison," Economics working papers 2006-09, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
  • Handle: RePEc:jku:econwp:2006_09

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Caselli, Francesco, 2005. "Accounting for Cross-Country Income Differences," Handbook of Economic Growth,in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 9, pages 679-741 Elsevier.
    2. Schneider, Friedrich, 2005. "Shadow economies around the world: what do we really know?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 598-642, September.
    3. Kneller, Richard & Andrew Stevens, Philip, 2003. "The specification of the aggregate production function in the presence of inefficiency," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 223-226, November.
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    More about this item


    shadow economy; income; aggregate productivity; efficiency;

    JEL classification:

    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • O5 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies

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