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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



of commodity and material assets, an adjustment of the monetary valuation by state and cooperative enterprises, economic organizations (excluding kolkhozes), and construction projects, called for by changes in the prices of raw and processed materials, fuel, and finished products, and in the rates for shipping, heat, and electricity.

The revaluation, which is based on inventory data, is made on the date when new prices and rates are introduced. Depending on the difference between the new prices and rates and the old ones, an upward or downward adjustment is made in the monetary valuation of commodity and material assets. Sources of compensation for the total reduction in the valuation and the system for handling the total increase in the valuation are established by the government or by the Ministry of Finance of the USSR on behalf of the government. The total reduction in the valuation, within standard limits, is applied to reduce the statutory capital of an enterprise, organization, or construction project; an increase in the valuation is applied to increase the statutory capital. The standard figure for the organization’s working capital is changed in conformity with this reduction or increase. A reduction in the valuation of stocks credited by the bank is applied to reduce loan indebtedness; an increase in the valuation increases indebtedness. The sums involved in the revaluation of credits are transferred by the State Bank of the USSR (Gosbank) to a special account in the state budget. Compensation for a reduction in valuation for above-norm commodity and material assets not credited by a bank comes from an enterprise’s resources (profit) and in some cases, from the budget. Increases in the valuation of stocks not credited by a bank are transferred to budget income.

Revaluation of commodity and material assets ensures uniformity and comparability in plan and report data and realism in keeping accounts of available working capital, expenditures for the production of output, and the results of the financial and economic activity of enterprises and organizations. These factors are very important for correctly determining profit and rate of profit and identifying reserves for increasing them.




an official increase in the gold content of a nation’s monetary unit or an actual rise in the unit’s exchange rate. Revaluation is one of the means used in the state-monopolistic regulation of the economy of capitalist nations. In terms of the way it affects an economy, revaluation is the opposite of devaluation. Until the end of the 1960’s, revaluation was a comparatively rare phenomenon in international monetary practices. This is because a nation that revalues its currency is put in a less advantageous position in comparison with other nations in terms of foreign trade, the influx of foreign capital, and international tourism.

By raising the exchange rate of a given country’s currency vis-à-vis the currencies of other nations, revaluation causes a rise in the prices of exported commodities purchased in a foreign currency; it thereby reduces a nation’s competitiveness on the world market and impedes the exports of its goods. By reducing the prices of imported commodities as expressed in the national currency, revaluation leads to an increased demand for imported commodities and a rise in imports.

The exchange rates that develop between the revalued currency of a given nation and other currencies make it disadvantageous for foreign owners to invest capital in the nation that has revalued its currency, since in exchanging currencies the foreign owner receives a smaller total in the local currency. Conversely, for the nation that has revalued its currency the export of capital becomes more advantageous, since it becomes possible to purchase foreign currency more cheaply.

In international tourism, revaluation leads to a decline in income from foreign tourists, since travel to the nation that has revalued its currency costs more. Conversely, it encourages travel abroad by residents of the country whose currency has been revalued, since foreign currencies become cheaper for them.

The governments of the capitalist nations use revaluation to combat inflation. It was precisely as an anti-inflation measure that revaluation was carried out by the Federal Republic of Germany in 1969 and 1971 and by the Netherlands, Switzerland, Austria, and a number of other nations in 1971 and 1973. By restricting the amount of foreign and largely speculative capital that investors put into a nation in hopes of a more profitable investment, revaluation makes it possible to restrain somewhat the increase in the total amount of money in circulation, thus slowing down the rise in domestic prices. The reduction in expenditures on imports that results from revaluation also restricts the rise in domestic prices.

Revaluation is also carried out to retard the growth of a favorable balance of trade. Such revaluation is at times brought about as a result of pressure applied by other nations or international monetary and financial organizations. Thus, in December 1971, the Japanese government, under pressure from the United States, revalued the yen to achieve a more equal balance of trade between the two countries.

In the early 1970’s, a number of capitalist countries made a transition to floating or fluctuating exchange rates, which deviate from the established parity according to supply and demand. Certain capitalist nations thus resorted to de facto revaluations of their currencies by raising the market rate of currencies without officially altering the gold content. Thus, the introduction in February 1973 of a floating rate for the Japanese yen meant a de facto revaluation of the yen by 16.25 percent in relation to the US dollar.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.