IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/7650.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

American Living Standards, 1888-1994: Evidence From Consumer Expenditures

Author

Listed:
  • Dora L. Costa

Abstract

I use micro data on food and recreation expenditures from 1888 to 1994 to provide the first estimates of overall CPI bias prior to the 1970s and new estimates of bias since the 1970s and to reassess long-run growth rates. I find that CPI bias was -0.1 percentage points per year between 1888 and 1919 and rose to 0.7 percentage points per year between 1919 and 1935. CPI bias was low in the 1950s and 0.3 percentage points per year in the 1960s and then rose to 2.7 percentage points per year between 1973 and 1982 before falling to 0.6 percentage points per year between 1983 and 1994. Inadequately accounting for the introduction of new consumer goods probably was the biggest source of bias between 1919 and 1935. Revised growth rates suggest that despite the Great Depression real per capita personal income was not falling but was rising by 0.5 percentage points per year between 1919 and 1935 and that growth rates were not stagnant in the 1970s but were almost as high as in the 1960s (4.0 and 3.2 in the 1960s and 1970s, respectively).

Suggested Citation

  • Dora L. Costa, 2000. "American Living Standards, 1888-1994: Evidence From Consumer Expenditures," NBER Working Papers 7650, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7650
    Note: AG DAE
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w7650.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Martin Neil Baily, 1981. "Productivity and the Services of Capital and Labor," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 12(1), pages 1-66.
    2. Bruce W Hamilton, 1998. "The True Cost of Living: 1974 - 1991," Economics Working Paper Archive 395, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
    3. Hausman, J. A. & Newey, W. K. & Powell, J. L., 1995. "Nonlinear errors in variables Estimation of some Engel curves," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 205-233, January.
    4. Michael J. Boskin, 1998. "Consumer Prices, the Consumer Price Index, and the Cost of Living," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(1), pages 3-26, Winter.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Onur Sunal & Özge Sezgin Alp, 2016. "Effect of different price indices on linkage between real GDP growth and real minimum wage growth in Turkey," Journal of Economic and Financial Studies (JEFS), LAR Center Press, vol. 4(1), pages 1-10, February.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • N11 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - U.S.; Canada: Pre-1913

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7650. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: () or (Joanne Lustig). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.