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On national wealth

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Conventional wealth statistics are seriously misleading, because they omit the largest single item of measurable wealth. The omitted item is present value of future surplus personal labor income, or "potential personal labor plus" (PPLS). The numerical value of this item can only be estimated indirectly... Concerns about the absolute magnitude of the federal deficit in relation to the national debt may be somewhat excessive... PPLS component is a very sensitive function of economic growth... Estimates of the national wealth are very sensitive to assumptions about future growth....There is further component of national wealth that cannot be measured with confidence by any existing methodology : the physical and biological environment, within which our economic system is "embedded"... However...it is not negligeable... Unavoidable costs of maintaining the environment in a sustainable state should also be taken in account. Such costs would include any costs of economic "restructuring" to achieve long-run

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en

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application/pdf

Resource resource URL

http://flora.insead.edu/fichiersti_wp/Inseadwp1993/93-14.pdf

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Copyright INSEAD. All rights reserved