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February 15, 2008

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Lawrence Krubner

Is there really reliable data on wages and food prices in London, Amsterdam, Milan, Leipzig, Beijing and Shanghai in 1740?

[Yes.]

Was there really enough world trade to establish a meaningful comparison of wages?

[Yes.]

Were the markets in currency rational and transparent enough that we can feel confident of these comparisons?

[Yes]

Surely there is a factor for error here, a percentage by which these estimates might be wrong by?

[Perhaps 25%, at most.]

If so, it would be good to know what the margin for error is.

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