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Consumption Symposium: Broadening Our Understanding of Household Consumption and Measurement, September 22-23, 2021

Issues in the Construction of an Expanded Measure of Consumption: Lessons from LIMEW (PDF)

Ajit Zacharias - Levy Economics Institute of Bard College - zacharia@levy.org

The economic determinants of the household standard of living in modern capitalist economies are shaped by markets, government, and households. The Levy Institute Measure of Economic Well-Being (LIMEW) aims to reflect the economic determinants. Changes in the LIMEW reflect changes in labor market conditions, financial and real estate markets, government expenditures and taxation, and the market-equivalent value of nonmarket household production. We will compare the LIMEW with other approaches to the measurement of economic well-being such as the "full income" measure proposed by the Sarkozy Commission. In light of the recent interest in developing broader measures of consumption, we will also discuss how such measures may overlap with the LIMEW. The construction of broader measures necessarily involves the integration of information from a variety of sources including several household surveys. We discuss the recent vintage of our technique of statistical matching as an approach to dealing with this class of problems.

 

Last Modified Date: November 10, 2021