Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/58849
Authors: 
Basu, Susanto
Pascali, Luigi
Schiantarelli, Fabio
Serven, Luis
Year of Publication: 
2012
Series/Report no.: 
Discussion Paper series, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit 6461
Abstract: 
We show that the welfare of a country's infinitely-lived representative consumer is summarized, to a first order, by total factor productivity and by the capital stock per capita. These variables suffice to calculate welfare changes within a country, as well as welfare differences across countries. The result holds regardless of the type of production technology and the degree of market competition. It applies to open economies as well, if total factor productivity is constructed using domestic absorption, instead of gross domestic product, as the measure of output. It also requires that total factor productivity be constructed with prices and quantities as perceived by consumers, not firms. Thus, factor shares need to be calculated using after-tax wages and rental rates and they will typically sum to less than one. These results are used to calculate welfare gaps and growth rates in a sample of developed countries with high-quality total factor productivity and capital data. Under realistic scenarios, the U.K. and Spain had the highest growth rates of welfare during the sample period 1985-2005, but the U.S. had the highest level of welfare.
Subjects: 
productivity
welfare
TFP
Solow residual
JEL: 
D24
D90
E20
O47
Persistent Identifier of the first edition: 
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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