The standard of living in the Soviet Union, 1928-1940

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New estimates of the growth in total and per capita consumption are developed for the Soviet Union during the first three Five-Year Plans. These estimates show that consumption per head rose 27 percent from 1928 to 1937. The gains were confined to the urban population and to those moving from the country to the city. In the standard interpretation, per capita consumption fell in the 1930s. The reasons for the difference in interpretation are examined in detail. The estimates presented here are based on new information and on alternative approaches to valuation and index number problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1063-1089
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Economic History
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)


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