Logan, Trevon D. (2011). Economies of scale in the household: puzzles and patterns from the American past. Economic Inquiry, 49(4)
Estimates of household economies of scale are critical for measuring income and living standards, yet we know little about how these scale economies change over time. I use American household expenditure surveys to produce the first comparable historical estimates of household scale economies. I find that scale economies changed significantly from 1888 to 1935 for all expenditure categories considered (food, clothing, entertainment, and housing), but not all trends in scale economies are consistent with theoretical predictions. As such, our notions about household economies of scale must be reassessed in light of this historical evidence.
Logan, Trevon D.