NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Thesia Garner

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

Working Papers and Chapters

July 2014Understanding the Relationship: CE Survey and PCE
with William Passero, Clinton McCully
in Improving the Measurement of Consumer Expenditures, Christopher Carroll, Thomas Crossley, and John Sabelhaus, editors
There are two federal data series that refer to U.S. household expenditures. One uses the Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE), and the other personal consumption expenditures (PCE). Weights for the Consumer Price Index (CPI) are based on CE data, but some suggest that PCE be used instead. Researchers have tried to reconcile differences in scope and definitions in the CE and PCE. We review these differences along with aggregate estimates resulting from accounting for them. However, to compare trends in CE and PCE over time, a concordance of comparable items in both surveys is desirable. Independent exercises by federal agencies have created three different concordances. Here we discuss one such concordance and highlight similarities and differences in the CE and PCE along with trends in ratios...
Is the Consumer Expenditure Survey Representative by Income?
with John Sabelhaus, David Johnson, Stephen Ash, David Swanson, John Greenlees, Steve Henderson
in Improving the Measurement of Consumer Expenditures, Christopher Carroll, Thomas Crossley, and John Sabelhaus, editors
Aggregate under-reporting of household spending in the Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE) can result from two fundamental types of measurement errors: higher-income households (who presumably spend more than average) are under-represented in the CE estimation sample, or there is systematic under-reporting of spending by at least some CE survey respondents. Using a new data set linking CE units to zip-code level average Adjusted Gross Income (AGI), we show that the very highest-income households are less likely to respond to the survey when they are sampled, but unit non-response rates are not associated with income over most of the income distribution. Although increasing representation at the high end of the income distribution could in principle significantly raise aggregate CE spending, t...
October 2013Is the Consumer Expenditure Survey Representative by Income?
with John Sabelhaus, David Johnson, Stephen Ash, David Swanson, John Greenlees, Steve Henderson: w19589
Aggregate under-reporting of household spending in the Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE) can result from two fundamental types of measurement errors: higher-income households (who presumably spend more than average) are under-represented in the CE estimation sample, or there is systematic under-reporting of spending by at least some CE survey respondents. Using a new data set linking CE units to zip-code level average Adjusted Gross Income (AGI), we show that the very highest-income households are less likely to respond to the survey when they are sampled, but unit non-response rates are not associated with income over most of the income distribution. Although increasing representation at the high end of the income distribution could in principle significantly raise aggregate CE spending, ...

Forthcoming: Is the Consumer Expenditure Survey Representative by Income?, John Sabelhaus, David Johnson, Stephen Ash, David Swanson, Thesia Garner, John Greenlees, Steve Henderson. in Improving the Measurement of Consumer Expenditures, Carroll, Crossley, and Sabelhaus. 2014

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

 
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