International income distribution: comparing new ICP and the existing data

International income distribution: comparing new ICP and the existing data Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a comparison of data on real (purchasing‐power‐parity – PPP) gross domestic product (GDP) per capita recently released by International Comparison Program (ICP) with the numbers reported in World Development Indicators (WDI) and Penn World Tables (PWT) which have been used by hundreds, perhaps thousands, of researchers over many years. Design/methodology/approach – A descriptive comparison is first provided by listing cases of largest absolute and percentage differences between ICP and WDI and PWT numbers. Second, well‐recommended measures of cross‐country inequality in real GDP per capita are computed, and inequality in terms of ICP data are compared with that based on WDI and PWT data. Findings – First, there are huge differences for numerous countries between the ICP numbers and the WDI and PWT data. Second, many of these differences are much larger than the highly publicized cases of China and India. Third, since ICP numbers are more accurate, existing WDI and PWT data are noted to substantially understate intercountry income inequality. Fourth, comparison of ICP with WDI shows a pattern which is similar to that indicated by a comparison of ICP and PWT. Fifth, the huge discrepancies in data provided by highly reputed sources, and used by numerous researchers, in such a prime indicator of economic and social well‐being seem to reflect a notable phenomenon. Originality/value – First, this is apparently the only attempt to provide a comparison of the new ICP data on country‐level real GDP per capita with that reported in the highly reputed and widely used WDI and PWT. Second, the enormous differences for numerous countries should suggest much caution to researchers in using the existing WDI and PWT data series. Third, the substantial understatement of intercountry income inequality by WDI and PWT data should be noteworthy. Fourth, although authors of WDI and PWT will probably identify reasons for the differences and reformulate their PPP data series, the present study may suggest need for some reflections on the context in which such large‐scale discrepancies in a variable of primary economic and social significance have existed for many years. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Social Economics Emerald Publishing

International income distribution: comparing new ICP and the existing data

International Journal of Social Economics, Volume 36 (6): 7 – May 8, 2009

Loading next page...
 
/lp/emerald-publishing/international-income-distribution-comparing-new-icp-and-the-existing-8ccX4bCCxG
Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0306-8293
D.O.I.
10.1108/03068290910956895
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a comparison of data on real (purchasing‐power‐parity – PPP) gross domestic product (GDP) per capita recently released by International Comparison Program (ICP) with the numbers reported in World Development Indicators (WDI) and Penn World Tables (PWT) which have been used by hundreds, perhaps thousands, of researchers over many years. Design/methodology/approach – A descriptive comparison is first provided by listing cases of largest absolute and percentage differences between ICP and WDI and PWT numbers. Second, well‐recommended measures of cross‐country inequality in real GDP per capita are computed, and inequality in terms of ICP data are compared with that based on WDI and PWT data. Findings – First, there are huge differences for numerous countries between the ICP numbers and the WDI and PWT data. Second, many of these differences are much larger than the highly publicized cases of China and India. Third, since ICP numbers are more accurate, existing WDI and PWT data are noted to substantially understate intercountry income inequality. Fourth, comparison of ICP with WDI shows a pattern which is similar to that indicated by a comparison of ICP and PWT. Fifth, the huge discrepancies in data provided by highly reputed sources, and used by numerous researchers, in such a prime indicator of economic and social well‐being seem to reflect a notable phenomenon. Originality/value – First, this is apparently the only attempt to provide a comparison of the new ICP data on country‐level real GDP per capita with that reported in the highly reputed and widely used WDI and PWT. Second, the enormous differences for numerous countries should suggest much caution to researchers in using the existing WDI and PWT data series. Third, the substantial understatement of intercountry income inequality by WDI and PWT data should be noteworthy. Fourth, although authors of WDI and PWT will probably identify reasons for the differences and reformulate their PPP data series, the present study may suggest need for some reflections on the context in which such large‐scale discrepancies in a variable of primary economic and social significance have existed for many years.

Journal

International Journal of Social EconomicsEmerald Publishing

Published: May 8, 2009

Keywords: Wealth and income; Income; World economy; International economics

References

  • International inequality in well‐being
    McGillivray, M.; Pillarisetti, J.R.
  • Interstate income inequality in the United States: measurement, modelling and some characteristics
    Ram, R.

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create folders to
organize your research

Export folders, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off