Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Big Mack Minimum Wage Hike

The iPod nano is cheap in the USA relative to the Big Mac. Is this just a random event?

I suspect a big portion of the difference has to do with the local wage content of the products. Hong Kong is the land of the free whereas the US is the land of the regulated. The minimum wage pushes up the price of the Big Mac in America.

Another factor could be differences in import tariffs on beef and electronics. While there is value in the data offered, the value would be increased if other dimensions were added, such as wage rates and import rates.

in reference to:

"a side-by-side comparison of the Big Mac Index and the iPod Nano Index suggests that these might not really be good metrics for measuring currency valuations. As you can see, the two indexes result in wildly uncorrelated results. If it were really a matter of currency valuation, you’d expect both to show similar valuation problems. Instead, the pattern just seems random"
- CHART OF THE DAY: The iPod And Big Mac Indexes Just Don't Work (view on Google Sidewiki)

blog comments powered by Disqus