According to the [Census Bureau] propaganda, over 30% of the data used in the monthly estimate is a guess... The beauty of this is that the CB has leeway to report a fictitious number for the advance estimate and then revise the original estimate when it reworks its numbers in the annual "benchmark revision" of the data


My point here is that the headline report is a fairytale.  Furthermore, the headline report is based on nominal numbers.  In this case, gasoline sales -- for which data for the advance estimate is available -- were responsible for one-third of the 0.8% headline increase from October.  This increase is largely attributable to gasoline price inflation.  In truth, the actual "unit" volume of sales in November vs. October is largely a mystery.  Yes, online sales have been strong, but online sales represent less than 10% of total retail sales.

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