Taxes on production and imports in Germany, 1901 to 1913.

Resource Type
Dataset : Survey and aggregate data
  • Spoerer, Mark
Publication Date
  • ZA:
    • Historical Studies Data
  • Abstract

    The focus of the study of Mark Spoerer is on an estimation of tax revenues before the first world war in Germany resulting from ‘production and import’ (before the revision of the “System of National accounts “(SNA): indirect taxes). Based on the SNA revised in 1993 this study initially constructs an allocation of different types of taxes to the category ‘production and import taxes’ in the late 19th and the early 20th century. On the basis of the classification of different types of taxes after SNA-definition for ‘production and import taxes’ comparative statistical sources for the year 1913 will be identified that can be connected with values for 1913 from a survey of the statistical office of the German Empire made in 1930. In the empirical part of the study tax revenues on ‘production and import taxes’ for the period from 1901 to 1913 of the Empire and the states and production taxes of municipalities for the six largest federal states (Prussia, Bavaria, Sachsen,Württemberg, Baden and Alsace-Lorraine) will be identified. In a concluding table tax revenues from ‘production and import taxes’ for entire Germany will be summarized. “A reconstruction of German pre-World War I economic aggregates by the incomes received approach, and possibly by the output approach as well, would lead to a problem with that already W. G. Hoffmann had to cope with. Depending on the measurement concept, the resulting aggregate series are either expressed in factor cost or in market prices. If measured accurately, the difference is ‘taxes on production and on imports´ - what used to be called ´indirect taxes´ before the 1993 revision of the System of National Accounts (SNA) - minus subsidies. For neither series do we have reliable data before 1925. An estimate of production and import taxes minus subsidies would allow to compare aggregates derived from either the factor cost or the market prices concept. Aggregates in terms of factor cost should anyway be transformed to market prices which is regarded as the more meaningful concept nowadays. Thus the focus of this article is to estimate German taxes on production and on imports minus subsidies before World War I. As will be illustrated below, this is an extremely laborious task which will lead us in the depths of early 20th century fiscal statistics which were recorded independently on all three levels of the German ‘Gebietskörperschaften’ (governmental units) - Reich, 26 ‘Länder’ (states) and some 65,000 ‘Kommunen’ (municipalities). For reasons having to do with the data available, the period under consideration is confined to 1901-13. The next section gives a brief overview of the national accounting framework with a focus on the theoretical definition and the historical identification of production and import taxes. In the third section, the production and import tax revenues of the Reich, the ‘Länder’ and the ‘Kommunen’ are gathered from contemporary statistical sources. For the ‘Kommunen’, for which aggregate figures do not exist, we will look at those of the largest six ‘Länder’ in detail (Prussia, Bavaria, Saxony, Württemberg, Baden and Alsace-Lorraine). The last section summarizes the results and puts them in a larger context” (Spoerer, a. cit., p. 162). Data tables in HISTAT: A.01 Tax revenues of the German Empire for the year 1913: Comparison of sources: Gerloff - Stat. Reichsamt (1913-1913) A.02 Production and tax revenue, Empire and States, in million Mark (1901-1913) A.03 Prussia: Municipal tax revenues, in million Mark (1895-1913) A.04 Bavaria: Municipal tax revenues, in million Mark (1900-1913) A.05 Sachsen: Municipal tax revenues, in million Mark (1899-1913) A.06 Württemberg: Municipal tax revenues, in million Mark (1901-1913) A.07 Baden: Municipal tax revenues, in million Mark (1901-1913) A.08 Alsace-Lorraine: Municipal tax revenues, in million Mark (1899-1913) A.09 Germany: Production taxes and import taxes, in million Mark (1901-1913)
Temporal Coverage
  • 1901 / 1913
Geographic Coverage
  • German Reich (1871-1945) (DXDE)
    German Royal Empire (Deutsches Kaiserreich), 1871 - 1918
Data and File Information
  • Unit Type: Text Unit
    Number of Units: 12
    Number of Variables: 98
A - Data and documents are released for academic research and teaching.
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Alternative Identifiers
  • ZA8479 (Type: ZA-No.)
  • Spoerer, Mark, 1998: Taxes on Production and Imports in Germany, 1901 – 1913, in: Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftsgeschichte, 1998/Nr. 1, S. 161 - 179.

Update Metadata: 2020-10-21 | Issue Number: 87 | Registration Date: 2011-05-11