Do countries falsify economic data strategically? Some evidence that they might. - HAL-SHS - Sciences de l'Homme et de la Société Access content directly
Journal Articles Review of Economics and Statistics Year : 2013

Do countries falsify economic data strategically? Some evidence that they might.

Abstract

Using Benford's Law, we find evidence supporting the hypothesis that countries at times misreport their economic data strategically. We group countries with similar economic conditions and find that for countries with fixed exchange rate regimes, high negative net foreign asset positions, negative current account balances or more vulnerable to capital flow reversals we reject the first-digit law for the balance of payments data. This corroborates the intuition of a simple economic model. The main results do not seem to be driven by countries in Sub-Saharan Africa or those with low institutional quality ratings.
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Dates and versions

halshs-00482106 , version 1 (08-05-2010)
halshs-00482106 , version 2 (29-10-2010)
halshs-00482106 , version 3 (15-07-2011)

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Tomasz Michalski, Gilles Stoltz. Do countries falsify economic data strategically? Some evidence that they might.. Review of Economics and Statistics, 2013, 95 (2), pp.591-616. ⟨10.1162/REST_a_00274⟩. ⟨halshs-00482106v3⟩
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