Friday, January 13, 2006

Shadow Government Statistics.

Here's an alternative view of the consumer price index (in blue) based on calculations using the same methodology that was used for this metric back in the 1970s for CPI. The results are dramatically different as you can see.

Source: John William's Shadow Government Statistics.

What if the key factors we consider when evaluating how our world is going are biased? The answer is easy: the charts we look at will also be biased no matter how perfect we make them or how many different views we examine.

With this in mind, check out John William's site Shadow Government Statistics where he tackles the question of the accuracy of some of the key headline numbers (GDP, CPI, Unemployment, Deficit) that impact so many things in our economy and our lives.

John raises some tough questions and puts us on warning that we always need some good checks and balances to any metrics we use in our analyses. He says:

Have you ever wondered why the CPI, GDP and employment numbers run counter to
your personal and business experiences? The problem lies in biased and
often-manipulated government reporting. We offer an exposé of the problems
within the reporting system, and an assessment of underlying economic

John offers a series of free reports that go into the details (see links below). These are controversial, to say the least.

08/24/04 Series Master Introduction
08/24/04 Employment and Unemployment Reporting
09/07/04 Federal Deficit Reality
09/22/04 The Consumer Price Index
10/06/04 Gross Domestic Product

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