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Zimmerman's Research Guide


Economic Data and Statistics

A broad range of economic indicators is published in each issue Barrons. They are also published as they come out in BNA's Daily Report for Executives (see the Index).

Yahoo!Finance provides definitions and sources for most CPI, GDP, home sales, auto & truck sales, business inventories, construction spending, durable goods orders, employment cost index, factory orders, housing starts & building permits, "leading indicators," productivity, retail sales, chain store sales, wholesale trade and more.

Other useful sites in this area, include:

. FDIC Banking Data, Statistics and Reports (www.fdic.gov/bank/index.html)

. FRASER: Federal Reserve Archived System for Economic Research (http://fraser.stlouisfed.org/)

. FRED: Federal Reserve Economic Data (http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/)

. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (http://stats.bls.gov/)

. The U.S. Census Bureau's Economic Census; data is accessible through the American Factfinder

. The publication, Economic Indicators, complied monthly by the Council of Economic Advisers for the Joint Economic Committee

Baltic Dry Index: The Baltic Dry Index measures the shipping activity for a basket of commodities. It is considered a leading indicator of economic activity. Current BDI rates are posted on Bloomberg.com and DryShips, Inc..

Cities: Economic data for U.S. cities is available from the Census Bureau using the tools discussed in the "States" section, below. For larger cities, check out the relevant Crain's Web site, such as Crain's New York Business, Crain's Chicago Business and Crain's Cleveland Business -- or the relevant Business Journal, covering business news in about 50 cities including Boston, Dallas, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington.

States: Information on individual U.S. states is compiled in the Census Bureau's Economic Census; the data can be manipulated using the American Factfinder; the Geographic Quick Reports break down the data by state and major industry. The Bureau of Economic Analysis provides data for Regional Analysis Reports; the interactive GDP by State page lets you break down GDP (and other BEA data) by state and industry. Also see the Small Business Administration's economic profiles of each state. The Mergent Municipal and Government Manual gives a financial profile of each state, as do Dun & Bradstreet Credit Reports.

Money Supply: The Federal Reserve publishes U.S. money supply figures (M1, M2 and M3) in Statistical Release H. 6. Note: M3 was discontinued as of March 23, 2006.

Services Surveys: The Annual and Quarterly Services Surveys (ASS and QSS) measure revenue at U.S. service-providing companies including hospitals, day-care centers and law firms. The Surveys are compiled by the U.S. Commerce Department. The U.S. Census Bureau posts current and historical data. You can create graphs here.

Foreign & International: The IMF publishes International Financial Statistics and posts economic data. Also try the Statesman's Yearbook and the Statistical Abstract of the World. European information is posted on EuroStat. United Nations statistics are available through UNdata. The U.S. Census Bureau posts links to Foreign Statistical Agencies. For international trade data and statistics see "International Trade."

See Also
American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI)
Bureau of Labor Statistics
CEO Confidence Survey
Commodity Prices
Consumer Price Index (CPI)
Cost of Living
Country Information
Foreign Currency Exchange Rates
Interest Rates
Labor Statistics
Minimum Wage
Money Rates

For comments, questions and suggestions, email the author
Copyright 2015 Andrew Zimmerman