Content №2 от 2017

Price Levels Across Russian Regions

Based on price levels (cost-of-living indices) across Russian cities, the article computes regional price levels relative to the Russian average over 2009-2015. A regional price level is defined as a weighted average over re­gion's cities where there is a statistical observation of consumer prices. Shares of the population in relevant cities (as at the beginning of year) serve as the weights. We compare the obtained results with approximate estimates of re­gional price levels that are applied in many publications. These estimates are based on the cost of the fixed basket of goods and services for cross-regional comparison of consumer purchasing power. The comparison makes it possible to conclude that the approximate method provides an adequate accuracy, as 90% ofdeviations fall into the range of ±5%. Regional price levels obtained are applied to estimating real (i.e. comparable between regions) incomes per capita relative to the national average over 2009-2015.

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