Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics
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Department of Economics, Lund University Working Papers, Department of Economics, Lund University

No 2016:13:
Irish GDP between the Famine and the First World War: Estimates Based on a Dynamic Factor Model

Fredrik N. G. Andersson () and Jason Lennard ()

Abstract: A major issue in Irish economic history is the lack of historical national accounts before the interwar period. This paper addresses the gap with new annual estimates of real GDP between 1842 and 1913 using an indirect estimation technique based on a set of macroeconomic variables and a dynamic factor model. Three major results emerge from the data. First, per capita growth was faster in this period than anywhere in Europe. Second, aggregate output contracted by more than a third during the Great Famine of the 1840s, but had recovered its level and closed the output gap by the end of the decade. Thirdly, the volatility of the business cycle fell by nearly three quarters in the second half of the sample.

Keywords: Ireland; GDP; Famine; Historical national accounts; (follow links to similar papers)

JEL-Codes: C38; E01; N13; (follow links to similar papers)

25 pages, June 27, 2016, Revised April 13, 2017

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