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Russian real wages before and after 1917

Robert Allen () and Ekaterina Khaustova

Explorations in Economic History, 2019, vol. 72, issue C, 23-37

Abstract: The paper measures real wages in St Petersburg, Moscow, and Kursk over 1853-1937. Workers in construction and large scale industry are studied. For the imperial period and the NEP, new series of prices are collected from archival and printed sources, and these radically revise previous measures of inflation. Russian living standards grew little between 1853 and 1913, but doubled between 1913 and 1928 due to the exchange rate, price, and employment policies followed by the regime. Real wages dropped to their pre-War level between 1928 and 1937, as the social surplus was mobilized for the industrialization drive.

Date: 2019
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