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Measuring the Knowledge Economy – Intangible Spending and Investment in Germany

Florian Berger ()
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Florian Berger: TU Berlin

Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), 2012, vol. 232, issue 1, pages 12-30

Abstract: Intangible assets are largely ignored by the “traditional” System of National Accounts (SNA), although they play an increasingly important economic role. The reasons for this are the substantial measurement and valuation problems. This article applies a methodology based on Hulten (1979) and Corrado et al. (2005) to provide some indications on the amount of investment in intangible goods in the German economy. I discuss the proposed categorization approach and quantify the different components for the German economy, drawing on a number of different data sources. I show that the amount of investment in intangibles is significant. An inclusion into the SNAwould add around Euro 142.4 bn to total investment in the German economy in 2004. This corresponds to an increase of almost 70%. However, an international comparison shows that Germany falls short in terms of intangible spending relative to the US and UK.

Keywords: Intangibles; investment; economic measurement (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E01 E22 C81 C82 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2012
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