Spatial Price Differences and Inequality in China: Housing Market Evidence
The large literature on regional inequality in China is hampered by incomplete evidence on price dispersion across space, making it hard to distinguish real and nominal inequality. The two main methods used to calculate spatial deflators have been to price a national basket of goods and services across China’s different regions or else to estimate a food Engel curve and define the deflator as that needed for nominally similar households to have the same food budget shares in all regions. Neither approach is convincing with the data available in China. Moreover, a focus on tradable goods like food may be misplaced because of the emerging literature on the rapid convergence of traded goods prices within China that contrasts with earlier claims of fragmented internal markets. In a setting where traded goods prices converge rapidly, the main source of price dispersion across space should come from non-traded items, and especially from housing given the fixity of land. In this paper we use newly available data on dwelling sales in urban China to develop spatially-disaggregated indices of house prices, which are then used as spatial deflators for both provinces and core urban districts. These new deflators complement existing approaches that have relied more on traded goods prices, and are used to re-examine the evidence on the level of regional inequality. Around one-quarter of the apparent spatial inequality disappears once account is taken of cost-of-living differences.
|Date of creation:||15 Mar 2013|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: + 64 (0)7 838 4758 (Administrator)
Fax: + 64 7 838 4331
Web page: http://cms.mngt.waikato.ac.nz/departments/economics
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Robert J. Hill, 2004. "Constructing Price Indexes across Space and Time: The Case of the European Union," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1379-1410, December.
- John Gibson & Steven Stillman, 2004.
"CPI Bias and Real Living Standards in Russia During The Transition,"
Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings
504, Econometric Society.
- Gibson, John & Stillman, Steven & Le, Trinh, 2008. "CPI bias and real living standards in Russia during the transition," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 140-160, August.
- John Gibson & Steven Stillman & Trinh Le, 2004. "CPI Bias and Real Living Standards in Russia During the Transition," Working Papers in Economics 04/02, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
- Chen, Qingquing & Goh, Chor-Ching & Sun, Bo & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2011. "Market Integration in the People’s Republic of China," Asian Development Review, Asian Development Bank, vol. 28(1), pages 72-93.
- Keller, Wolfgang & Shiue, Carol Hua, 2004.
"Markets in China and Europe on the Eve of the Industrial Revolution,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
4420, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Carol H. Shiue & Wolfgang Keller, 2007. "Markets in China and Europe on the Eve of the Industrial Revolution," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1189-1216, September.
- Carol H. Shiue & Wolfgang Keller, 2004. "Markets in China and Europe on the Eve of the Industrial Revolution," NBER Working Papers 10778, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Timmins, Christopher, 2006. "Estimating spatial differences in the Brazilian cost of living with household location choices," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 59-83, June.
- Bruce W. Hamilton, 2001. "Using Engel's Law to Estimate CPI Bias," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 619-630, June.
- Sicular, Terry & Yue, Ximing & Gustafsson, Bjorn & Li, Shi, 2006.
"The Urban-Rural Income Gap and Inequality in China,"
Working Paper Series
RP2006/135, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Terry Sicular & Yue Ximing & Björn Gustafsson & Li Shi, 2007. "The Urban-Rural Income Gap And Inequality In China," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 53(1), pages 93-126, 03.
- Ma, Hengyun & Oxley, Les & Gibson, John, 2009. "Gradual reforms and the emergence of energy market in China: Evidence from tests for convergence of energy prices," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4834-4850, November.
- Lanjouw, Peter & Ravallion, Martin & DEC, 1994.
"Poverty and household size,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
1332, The World Bank.
- Gustafsson, Bjorn & Shi, Li, 2002. "Income inequality within and across counties in rural China 1988 and 1995," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 179-204, October.
- Wolfgang Keller & Carol H. Shiue, 2007.
"Market Integration and Economic Development: A Long-run Comparison,"
Review of Development Economics,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(1), pages 107-123, 02.
- Wolfgang Keller & Carol H. Shiue, 2004. "Market Integration and Economic Development: A Long-run Comparison," NBER Working Papers 10300, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Keller, Wolfgang & Shiue, Carol Hua, 2004. "Market Integration and Economic Development: A Long-Run Comparison," CEPR Discussion Papers 4310, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Xu, Xinpeng, 2002. "Have the Chinese provinces become integrated under reform?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 116-133.
- Alwyn Young, 2000. "The Razor'S Edge: Distortions And Incremental Reform In The People'S Republic Of China," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(4), pages 1091-1135, November.
- Fan, Shenggen & Kanbur, Ravi & Zhang, Xiaobo, 2010. "China’s Regional Disparities: Experience and Policy," Working Papers 57041, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
- Gong, Cathy Honge & Meng, Xin, 2008. "Regional Price Differences in Urban China 1986-2001: Estimation and Implication," IZA Discussion Papers 3621, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- David C. Parsley & Shang-Jin Wei, 1996.
"Convergence to the Law of One Price Without Trade Barriers or Currency Fluctuations,"
NBER Working Papers
5654, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Parsley, David C & Wei, Shang-Jin, 1996. "Convergence to the Law of One Price without Trade Barriers or Currency Fluctuations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(4), pages 1211-36, November.
- LAN, Yuexing & SYLWESTER, Kevin, 2010. "Does the law of one price hold in China? Testing price convergence using disaggregated data," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 224-236, June.
- Thomas Reardon & C. Peter Timmer & Christopher B. Barrett & Julio Berdegué, 2003. "The Rise of Supermarkets in Africa, Asia, and Latin America," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1140-1146.
- Riccardo Massari & M. Grazia Pittau & Roberto Zelli, 2010. "Does regional cost-of-living reshuffle Italian income distribution?," Working Papers 166, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
- J. L. Nicholson, 1976. "Appraisal Of Different Methods Of Estimating Equivalence Scales And Their Results," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 22(1), pages 1-11, 03.
- C. Simon Fan & Xiangdong Wei, 2006. "The Law of One Price: Evidence from the Transitional Economy of China," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(4), pages 682-697, November.
- Alwyn Young, 2000. "The Razor's Edge: Distortions and Incremental Reform in the People's Republic of China," NBER Working Papers 7828, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Li, Chao & Gibson, John, 2013.
"Rising Regional Inequality in China: Fact or Artifact?,"
Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 16-29.
- Chao Li & John Gibson, 2012. "Rising Regional Inequality in China: Fact or Artefact?," Working Papers in Economics 12/09, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
- Dean Jolliffe, 2006. "Poverty, Prices, and Place: How Sensitive is the Spatial Distribution of Poverty to Cost of Living Adjustments?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 44(2), pages 296-310, April.
- Zhenfeng Pan, 2004. "Commercial housing ownership predictors in urban China: an analysis of a national survey," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(1), pages 85-91.
- John R. Logan & Yiping Fang & Zhanxin Zhang, 2009. "Access to Housing in Urban China," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(4), pages 914-935, December.
- Yongheng Deng & Joseph Gyourko & Jing Wu, 2012. "Land and House Price Measurement in China," NBER Working Papers 18403, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Gluschenko, Konstantin, 2006. "Biases in cross-space comparisons through cross-time price indexes: The case of Russia," BOFIT Discussion Papers 9/2006, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wai:econwp:13/06. 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: (Brian Silverstone)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.