Skip to main content

Basic Sources of United States Economic Statistics

Major Sources for United States macroeconomic statistics

Statistical Abstract of the United States
1st- 1878-
Summary statistics on the social, political and economic organization of the United States. Compiled from publications and records of various government and private agencies, it is designed to serve both as a convenient reference volume and as a guide to other statistical sources. Emphasis is on national data but many tables include statistics on states, regions and foreign countries. Tables generally cover a period of 10 to 20 years, although some begin around 1800.

(DSS) HA202.U58

Historical Statistics of the United States, Millennial Edition
Statistical series on subjects ranging from population and land area to production figures for crops and manufactured products. Coverage begins with the colonial and pre-Federal period and goes up to 2000. Detailed documentation provides brief histories of the statistical series and source materials.
(DSS) HA202.H57

Data-Planet Datasets
Wide variety of economic, social, environmental, and political indicators from many US government agencies as well as international bodies. 

Global Financial Data
Data on bonds, commodities, interest rates, stock markets and indices, futures, exchange rates, GDP, prices, and unemployment. World exchange rates back to 1624, inflation rates back to 1748, and wholesale prices back to 1720. Major commodities going back to 1784. Some annual series go back to the 1200s. Methodology and sources are documented. The stock market indices go back to 1693. Also included are data on stock market capitalization, dividend yields, price/earnings ratios, total return performance indices, and Global Financial Data's World Stock Market Indices. 

Global Insight
Best source for United States national, state, and metropolitan data. International data includes IMF's International Financial Statistics, Direction of Trade, and Balance of Payments as well as OECD's Main Economic Indicators and National Accounts. Limited data coming directly from other countries is also included.

Datastream International
International economic indicators on a time series basis. Data is derived from national governments and banks, IMF, OECD, other international agencies, and the company's own researchers.
Location: Firestone Library -- A Floor RIS Suite

Economist Intelligence Unit
International economic, social, and political data and forecasts on a time series basis. Data is derived from national governments, trade associations, BIS, IMF, IFC, OECD, the World Bank, and EIU's own researchers. Consists of
EIU Country Data (international economic data and forecasts on a time series basis), EIU Market Indicators and Forecasts (social, economic, and political risk data), EIU World Investment Service (foreign direct investment), and EIU City Data (detailed cost comparisons of major international cities). Some of their other services offer overviews of various international industries, commercial regulations, risk briefings, and update services. Textual analysis and forecasts can be found in the EIU Country Profiles, Reports, and Forecasts 1996+ or the Economist Intelligence Unit Country Reports Historical Archive 1952-1995.

Statistics on the OECD countries regarding topics such as general economic indicators, agriculture and food, bank profitability, economic forecasts, education, employment, globalization, industrial structure, institutional investors, international development, migration, trade, international direct investment, national accounts, governmental revenue, science and technology, services, social expenditure, industrial structural analysis, and telecommunications.

Cross-National Time-Series Data Archive
Economic, social, and political indicators of nations and empires of the world including countries and empires that no longer exist. Select data goes back to 1815.

U.S. Council of Economic Advisers.
Economic Indicators
Monthly report presenting monthly, quarterly, and annual data for national economic indicators. Contains approximately 45 tables accompanied by illustrative charts. Economic Indicators, supplement 1980 presents historical data and descriptive material on the sources, uses, and limitations of the data series. It is issued every 10 years.

U.S. President.
Economic Report of the President
Annual report containing texts of the President's economic report, summarizing the Administration's economic policy, and of the Council of Economic Advisers report, reviewing in detail the progress of the economy and the Administration's proposals and programs. An extensive appendix contains many long time series of statistics.

Survey of Current Business
Bureau of Economic Analysis. Monthly.
One of the most important sources for current U.S. business statistics. Covers general business indicators, prices, domestic and foreign trade, labor force, employment and earnings, finance and the major industries. Special reports appear at intervals on national income and product accounts, international transactions, personal income and international investment both here and abroad. For long time series see Business Statistics of the United States (HC101.A131222) and its predecessor, Business Statistics (HC1.R1982q) published since 1951.

Business Dynamics Statistics. 1976+
Created from the Longitudinal Business Database (LBD), a confidential database available to researchers throughout the network of Census Research Data Centers. The BDS was developed by the U.S. Census Bureau, and partially funded by the Kauffman Foundation. Unique in that its source data are longitudinal in nature and permit tracking establishments and firms over time. The public use files are created in an effort to make these data accessible to a broad range of data users. Provides annual statistics by firm age and size. Annual files are also provided at the state level, for Standard Industrial Classification sectors and for the economy as a whole.