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ON THE ACCURACY OF EXPORT GROWTH IN ARGENTINA, 1870-1913

Antonio Tena-Junguito and Henry Willebald

Economic History of Developing Regions, 2013, vol. 28, issue 1, 28-68

Abstract: Argentine export growth before the First World War is considered one of the most relevant variables in order to understand the main characteristics of Argentina's long-run modern economic growth properly. The lack of accuracy of the official export series, especially the relative official values used, lies behind some of the controversies and doubts of the historiography when addressing the causes and consequences of Argentina's international convergence. We have used empirical evidence to test the accuracy of quantities and value exports records, first, according to their import partners' records and, second, according to international market prices. Results show that the hypothesis of export price undervaluation bias is correct. In the light of these results we reconstructed a new Argentine export f.o.b. values and price index using international prices valued in pounds sterling which allows us to offer a new proposal indicating a more dynamic Argentine export growth during the Belle Époque years.

Date: 2013
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DOI: 10.1080/20780389.2013.805508

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