No, I'm not trying to report to McDonaldland HQ, but am referring to the
"Big Mac Index" published periodically in The Economist. I thought this
might appeal to the economics statistician amongst you.

This started out one day some years ago when the boys on St. James's
Street were feeling alittle peckish from the office party held the
previous evening, so they couldn't concentrate on writing stories, so
some suggested a "Big Max Index" which would list all the countries,
then giving their exchange rates vis-à-vis the US Thaler.  They would
also factor in PPP (Purchasing Power Parity) which shows the "real"
value you're getting for any currency.  The final column compares the
PPP-adjusted currency exchange and relates it in terms of percentages. A
positive percentage means the currency is over-valued, and a negative
currency means the currency is under-valued. The article explains some
of their methodology and how they use the currency rating system. The
Economist promises this index will help economists "get their teeth"
into forecasting economic cycles.

Some Big Mac prices (in US$ PPP terms):

Least expensive: Argentina: $0.78
Most expensive: Switzerland: $3.81

Some others, just to recognize some foreigners on the list:

Canada $2.12
U.K. $2.88
Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

“Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he
will pick himself up and continue on” – Winston Churchill

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the
author solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the
author’s employer, nor those of any organization with which the author
may be associated.

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