THE VOLUME OF SOVIET MUNITIONS OUTPUT, 1937-1944: A REEVALUATION

The paper examines the official Soviet index of munitions output in World War II which was first published in 1965. This index seems to have been based on annual budgetary appropriations for expenditure on ground and air munitions at current prices; since Soviet munitions prices fell rapidly in war time, it grossly understates change in the real volume of war production. Subsequently published official data on the production of different lines of ground and air munitions in physical units, supplemented by information about real spending on naval munitions, supply a reliable foundation for a new index of the volume of total munitions output. New indices for different branches of the munitions industries can be calculated in Soviet prices of either 1941 or 1944, and combined using weights based on 1941 and 1944 expenditure shares. The result shows that Soviet munitions output underwent a fourfold expansion between 1940 and the 1944 peak. The new index can also be extended back to 1937, although with some loss of reliability. When this is done, Soviet munitions output at the 1944 peak is shown to have run at 10-11 times the 1937 rate. Lastly, the level and dynamic of Soviet munitions output measured in this way can be compared with the performance of similar measures of munitions output in World War II in other countries.


Issue Date:
Feb 02 1989
Publication Type:
Working or Discussion Paper
Record Identifier:
http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/record/268347
Language:
English
Total Pages:
60




 Record created 2018-02-14, last modified 2018-02-15

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