Liberty & Power: Group Blog (power_liberty) wrote,
Liberty & Power: Group Blog

C.J. MALONEY: The Trouble With Economic Statistics

"If central bankers threw out all the data that was poorly measured, there would be very little information left on which to base their decisions."

- A former research director at the Fed, quoted by Bloomberg's Caroline Baum

It all started in Germany and was called the Methodenstreit (the clash over methods), an intellectual war over how the study of economics would be conducted - either by the logical deductive reasoning embodied by the "Austrian" school or by the mathematical methods embodied by those leading lights of the positivist German Historical School, such as Professor Gustav von Schmoller. The war ended in a complete victory for the latter and now, a century and a half on, the mathematical methods championed by Schmoller have swept the globe.

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