Using the currency demand approach, size and development of Colombia's shadow economy are estimated over the period from 1980 to 2012. The results show a great extent of shadow economic activity varying over time between 27 and 56 % of GDP. The most important factors driving the shadow economy are indirect taxation and unemployment. Analyzing the interaction between shadow and official economy, the shadow economy has a negative effect on the official one. Average growth of real per capita GDP is 1.86% between 1980 and 2012, without shadow economy it would have been higher around 0.12 percentage points on average.
Colombian shadow economy currency demand method taxation unemployment interaction between the shadow and official economy