NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Alan Heston

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Working Papers

November 2008Understanding PPPs and PPP-based national accounts
with Angus Deaton: w14499
PPP-based national accounts have become an important part of the database for macroeconomists, development economists, and economic historians. Frequently used global data come from the Penn World Table (PWT) and the World Bank’s World Development Indicators; a substantial fraction of the world is also covered in the PPP accounts produced by the OECD and the European Union. This paper provides an overview of how these data are constructed, and discusses both the theory and the practical problems of implementing it. All of these data are underpinned by the International Comparison Program (ICP), which collects data on prices worldwide. The most recent round of the ICP was for 2005 with final results published in early 2008; version 7.0 of the Penn World Table will soon incorporate these res...
November 2004Estimating Real Production and Expenditures Across Nations: A Proposal for Improving the Penn World Tables
with Robert C. Feenstra, Marcel P. Timmer, Haiyan Deng: w10866
In this paper we propose a new approach to international comparisons of real GDP measured from the output-side. The traditional Geary-Khamis system to measure real GDP from the expenditure-side is modified to include differences in the terms of trade between countries. It is shown that this system has a strictly positive solution under mild assumptions. On the basis of a set of domestic final output, import and export prices and values for 14 European countries and the U.S. it is shown that differences between real GDP measured from the expenditure and output-side can be substantial, especially for small open economies.
May 1991The Penn World Table (Mark 5): An Expanded Set of International Comparisons, 1950-1987
with Robert Summers: r1562

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