What Do Survey Data Tell Us about US Businesses?
Serdar Birinci (),
Ellen McGrattan and
Kurt See ()
No 2019-021, Working Papers from Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis
This paper examines the reliability of survey data on business incomes, valuations, and rates of return, which are key inputs for studies of wealth inequality and entrepreneurial choice. We compare survey responses of business owners with available data from administrative tax records, brokered private business sales, and publicly traded company filings and document problems due to nonrepresentative samples and measurement errors across several surveys, subsamples, and years. We find that the discrepancies are economically relevant for the statistics of interest. We investigate reasons for these discrepancies and propose corrections for future survey designs.
Keywords: Survey data; business incomes; valuations; taxes; intangibles (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C83 E22 H25 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 19 pages
Date: 2019-07, Revised 2020-01
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-mac
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Published in American Economic Review: Insights
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Journal Article: What Do Survey Data Tell Us about US Businesses? (2020)
Working Paper: What Do Survey Data Tell Us About US Businesses? (2019)
Working Paper: What Do Survey Data Tell Us about US Businesses? (2019)
Working Paper: What Do Survey Data Tell Us about U.S. Businesses? (2019)
Working Paper: What Do Survey Data Tell Us about U.S. Businesses? (2018)
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