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Price and cost competitiveness. Quarterly report on the price and cost competitiveness of the European Union and its Member States. Fourth quarter 1997. II/224/4/97-EN

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PRICE AND COST COMPETITIVENESS -- - - .. UJ UJ (.) EUROPEAN COMMISSION DIRECTORATE-GENERAL FOR ECONOMIC AND FINANCIAL AFFAIRS *** * * * * * * *** Phil Text Box Phil Text Box Phil Text Box Phil Text Box The quarterly reports on "Price and Cost Competitiveness" provide a periodic assessment by the Commission services of the price and cost competitiveness of the European Union and its Member States. Comments and enquiries should be addressed to : European Commission Directorate-General for Economic and Financial Affairs 200, rue de Ia Loi 1 049 Brussels, Belgium DATA SOURCES 1. Nominal bilateral exchange rates and deflators Exchange rate data are taken from the TXI (DGII) data base. TXI contains the official daily rates recorded at 14.15 hours. Monthly figures are calculated as the arithmetic mean of the daily rates. Quarterly and yearly data are geometric means of these monthly figures. Annual figures on the deflators (including Commission forecasts for the current year) come from the AMECO (DGII) data base. As the calculation of real effective exchange rates requires a full data set, missing data have been estimated. The annual figures have been transformed into quarterly data by applying a straight-forward spline method. 2. Weight matrices: The double export weight matrices are derived from trade matrices with domestic production for the home market on the diagonal. The source of data on bilateral exports is the DoT (IMF) data base. The source of data on domestic production (defined as GDP- exports) is national accounts' data from AMECO. Table H in Part 2 of the report reproduces the most recent weight matrices used in calculating effective exchange rates. In this report the latest weight matrices available are those of 1995. COUNTRY COVERAGE 1. Competitors The report presents nominal and real effective exchange rates relative to a group of 23 industrial countries (IC23), relative to the European Union as a whole (EUR1

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