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Substitution Biases in Price Indexes during Transition

Author

Listed:
  • Jan Hanousek

    (CERGE-EI, Prague)

  • Randall K. Filer

    (CUNY)

Abstract

The rapidly changing environment of the transition may create special problems for calculation of index numbers that require a fixed basket of goods and retail outlets. Using referent-level data we find that fixed- weight Laspeyres index on average overstated cost of living increases by approximately 5 per cent a year when compared with a superlative index in the Czech Republic. This difference is smaller than might be expected given the large changes in relative prices that occurred during transition and suggests that consumer substitution impacts may have been largely offset by other factors, especially rising prices combined with increased consumption of some goods as artificial shortages under communism were removed. Indeed, in the period of greatest supply response to price liberalization, the Laspeyres index appears to understate increases in the cost of living.

Suggested Citation

  • Jan Hanousek & Randall K. Filer, 2003. "Substitution Biases in Price Indexes during Transition," Development and Comp Systems 0306002, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpdc:0306002
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; prepared on IBM PC ; to print on HP/PostScript; pages: 22 ; figures: included
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    File URL: http://econwpa.repec.org/eps/dev/papers/0306/0306002.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Brent R. Moulton, 1996. "Bias in the Consumer Price Index: What Is the Evidence?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(4), pages 159-177, Fall.
    2. Brada, Josef C. & King, Arthur E. & Kutan, Ali M., 2000. "Inflation bias and productivity shocks in transition economies: The case of the Czech Republic," ZEI Working Papers B 02-2000, University of Bonn, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies.
    3. Paula De Masi & Vincent Koen, 1997. "Prices in the Transition; Ten Stylized Facts," IMF Working Papers 97/158, International Monetary Fund.
    4. Matthew D. Shapiro & David W. Wilcox, 1997. "Alternative strategies for aggregating prices in the CPI," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 113-125.
    5. Jan Hanousek & Randall K. Filer, 2000. "Output Changes and Inflationary Bias in Transition," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp167, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    6. Jan Hanousek & Randall K. Filer, 2001. "Consumers' Opinion of Inflation Bias Due to Quality Improvements in Transition in the Czech Republic," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp184, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    7. Filer, Randall K. & Hanousek, Jan, 2002. "Survey-Based Estimates of Biases in Consumer Price Indices during Transition: Evidence from Romania," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 476-487, September.
    8. Mark A. Wynne & Fiona D. Sigalla, 1994. "The consumer price index," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Q II, pages 1-22.
    9. Triplett, Jack E, 2001. "Should the Cost-of-Living Index Provide the Conceptual Framework for a Consumer Price Index?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(472), pages 311-334, June.
    10. Diewert, W. E., 1976. "Exact and superlative index numbers," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 115-145, May.
    11. Deborah J. Brown & Lee F. Schrader, 1990. "Cholesterol Information and Shell Egg Consumption," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 72(3), pages 548-555.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jan Babecký & Fabrizio Coricelli & Roman Horváth, 2009. "Assessing Inflation Persistence: Micro Evidence on an Inflation Targeting Economy," Czech Journal of Economics and Finance (Finance a uver), Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, vol. 59(2), pages 102-127, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Inflation Bias; Transition Economies; Output Fall CPI Bias; Formula bias; Price Liberalization; Substitution bias;

    JEL classification:

    • C82 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Macroeconomic Data; Data Access
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • P24 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - National Income, Product, and Expenditure; Money; Inflation

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