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Do Unit Value Export, Import, and Terms of Trade Indices Represent or Misrepresent Price Indices?

Author/Editor: Silver, Mick
Authorized for Distribution: May 1, 2007
Electronic Access: Free Full Text (PDF file size is 353KB)
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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF. The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate.

Summary: Unit value export and import indices compiled from returns to customs authorities are often used as surrogates for price indices in the measurement of inflation transmission, terms of trade (effects), and to deflate import and export value series to derive volume series. Their widespread use is mainly due to their relatively low cost compared with establishment price surveys. This paper provides evidence of substantial bias in their representation of such price changes. Their continued use would mislead economic analysis. The paper considers the efficacy of alternative strategies for their improvement, and argues for a move to establishment-based price surveys.
 
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Series: Working Paper No. 07/121
Subject(s): Export prices | Imports | Terms of trade | Consumer price indexes | Producer price indexes
Author's keyword(s): Unit Value Index; Export Import Price Index; International Trade Price Indices; Terms of Trade.
 
English  
    Published:   May 1, 2007        
    ISBN/ISSN:   1934-7073   Format:   Paper
    Stock No:   WPIEA2007121   Pages:   34
    Price:   US$18.00 (Academic Rate: US$18.00 )
       
     
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