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

Gilles Stoltz 1, 2, 3 Tomasz Michalski 2, *
* Corresponding author
3 CLASSIC - Computational Learning, Aggregation, Supervised Statistical, Inference, and Classification
DMA - Département de Mathématiques et Applications - ENS Paris, ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris, Inria Paris-Rocquencourt
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 or negative current account balances, we reject the first-digit law for balance of payments data. This corroborates the intuition of a simple economic model. Countries with bad institutional quality rankings (though these seem not to be responsible for our other findings) release economic data of questionable veracity.
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Preprints, Working Papers, ...
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Contributor : Gilles Stoltz <>
Submitted on : Friday, October 29, 2010 - 10:42:59 AM
Last modification on : Friday, November 6, 2020 - 3:10:05 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Sunday, January 30, 2011 - 2:46:50 AM


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  • HAL Id : halshs-00482106, version 2


Gilles Stoltz, Tomasz Michalski. Do countries falsify economic data strategically? Some evidence that they might.. 2010. ⟨halshs-00482106v2⟩



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