What Was Spain's GDP Then?
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is the value at market prices of all final goods and services produced within a country during a given time period. There are two measures of GDP:
- Nominal GDP is the value of GDP at current prices, here measured in millions of Euros*
- Real GDP is the value of GDP at a given base year prices, here presented at constant (2010) market prices measured in millions of Euros
- The GDP Deflator is the price index used to measure changes in the overall level of prices for the goods and services that make up GDP. It is simply 100 times the ratio of nominal to real GDP.
- GDP per capita is calculated by dividing either nominal or real GDP for a given year by the population in that year. These numbers can be thought of as the average share of output per person.
*The currency of Spain before 2002 was the Peseta. To convert these data to Pesetas for years before this date, multiply the number of Euro by 166.386.
Leandro Prados de la Escosura (2017), Spanish Economic Growth, 1850-2015 (London: Palgrave Macmillan), https://www.palgrave.com/la/book/9783319580418 (link to the full dataset, https://espacioinvestiga.org/bbdd-chne/?lang=en)
Consumer Price Index
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) in any year is the cost in that year of a bundle of goods and services purchased by a typical consumer compared to the cost of that bundle of goods and services in a base period.
The CPI presented here results from splicing three series: those of Instituto Nacional de Estadística, for 1961-2017; Ojeda (1988), for 1936-1961; and Maluquer de Motes (2006), for 1850-1936.
The CPI is expressed as 2010=100.
Maluquer de Motes, J. (2006), “’la paradisíaca estabilidad de la anteguerra’. Elaboración de un índice de precios de consumo en España, 1830-1936”, Revista de Historia Económica 24 (2): 333-382
Ojeda, A. de (1988), Indices de precios en España en el período 1913-1987, Madrid: Banco de España. Estudios de Historia Económica no. 17
Instituto Nacional de Estadística website 1961-2017.
Although the CPI may be the most popular and best-known price series, any CPI series is beset with limitations. A long-run series, such as the one presented here, has these limitations magnified, and also has difficulties of its own. Among these problems are: (1) The CPI pertains only to commodities purchased by consumers; it is not a price index of all production or all consumption in the economy. (2) It is difficult to account for changing qualities of commodities and introduction of new commodities over time. (3) A CPI is only as good as the basic price and weight (expenditure) data. In general, these data are less available and of lower quality as one goes further into the past.
Nominal wages derive from splicing two different series. For 2000-2017, Instituto Nacional de Estadística, CNAE09, labour cost per hour. For 1954-2000, compensation per hour worked per employee obtained by splicing different sets of Spanish national accounts (Contabilidad Nacional de España, various years). For 1850- 1954, ratio of total labour costs to the total number of hours worked. The estimates were constructed as background calculations for Prados de la Escosura and Rosés (2010).
Unskilled wages are proxied by those in agriculture and derive from the same sources.
Nominal wages are expressed as 2010=100.
Instituto Nacional de Estadística, CNAE09, Harmonized Labour Cost Index 2000-2017 (2012 Base)
Contabilidad Nacional de España (various years)
Prados de la Escosura, L. and J. R. Rosés (2010), “Human Capital and Economic Growth in Spain, 1850-2000”, Explorations in Economic History 47 (4): 520-532
Leandro Prados-de-la-Escosura , "What Was Spain's GDP Then?" MeasuringWorth,