Title Official economic data are often wrong, but subtly so Degree of recognition International Media name/outlet The Market NZZ Media type Web Country Switzerland Date 02/07/2020 Description GDP, inflation, unemployment... quarter by quarter, the market moves to the ups and downs of these figures, taken as gospel. Official figures are seldom questioned by economists and the media. Yet experts have shown that they can be manipulated, or in a majority of cases, they can express only half-truths. A half-truth is to say, on January 2015, that the Swiss franc’s 20% appreciation was harmful to exporters, and not to mention that all of Swiss imports were getting a 20% discount.
But more importantly, «macroeconomic indicators are much more ambiguous than is commonly realized», write Roberto Aragão and Lukas Linsi, two researchers from the universities of Amsterdam and Groningen. «Therefore, the line between accurate and manipulated data is more blurry than typical narratives about manipulation acknowledge». Their academic article, published in the «Review of International Political Economy», focuses on the specific ways in which official statistics get manipulated, using the cases of Greece’s public deficit figures, Argentina’s inflation statistics, and the Brazilian «fiscal pedaling» scandal.
Producer/Author Myret Zaki URL https://themarket.ch/meinung/official-economic-data-are-often-wrong-but-subtly-so-ld.2242 Persons Lukas Linsi