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How does the Journal webinar work?
Journal webinars are held every few months and last about an hour. Journal papers are carefully selected from recent issues of the
Royal Statistical Society's journals by editorial board for their importance, relevance and/or use of cutting-edge methodology; and authors are invited to present their work and take questions from an audience who 'dial in' to access the webinar.
Two papers are selected from our journals and authors will be invited to present their papers (20 minutes) followed by discussion (25 minutes) for each paper. Attendees will dial into a teleconference call. Papers and slides will be available to download two weeks in advance or you can log into the conference system and follow the presentation live online. These sessions are open to members and non-members. No need to pre-register. Audio recordings will be available for download shortly after the session.
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Date: 10th November 3pm to 4pm
Paper: ‘Is the Carli Index flawed? Assessing the case for the RPIJ’ published in JRSS-A in 2015 (Vol 178:2)
Author: Peter Levell is an economics researcher at the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) and a part-time PhD student at University College London. His work at the IFS has so far covered a diverse set of subjects: from measurement issues in expenditure surveys, to issues around taxation, the distributional impact of inflation and behavioural economics. To date his academic work has focused on trying to answer questions concerning the appropriate measurement of consumer price inflation and at achieving a better understanding of household decisions over consumption and labour supply."
Chair: Paul Smith, Associate Professor in Official Statistics, University of Southampton
Discussant: Andrew Baldwin, a former employee of Statistics Canada |
This paper discusses the decision in March 2013 of the UK's Office for National Statistics to replace the controversial Carli index with the Jevons index in a new version of the Retail Prices Index - the RPIJ. In doing so we make three contributions to the way price indices should be selected for measures of consumer price inflation when quantity information is not available (i.e at the `elementary' level). Firstly, we introduce a new price bouncing test under the test approach for choosing index numbers. Secondly, we provide empirical evidence on the performance of
the Carli and Jevons indices in different contexts under the statistical approach. Thirdly, applying something analogous to the principle of insufficient reason, we argue contrary to received wisdom in the literature, that the
economic approach can be used to choose indices at the elementary level, and moreover that it favours the use of the Jevons index. Overall, we conclude that there is a case against the Carli index and that the Jevons index
is to be preferred.
Webcasts, MP3s and slides from past events are available to download.