The Impact of Newspapers on Consumer Confidence: Does Spin Bias Exist?
It is sometimes argued that news reports in the media suffer from biased reporting. Mullainathan and Shleifer (2002) argue that there are two types of media bias. One bias, called ideology, reflects a news outlet’s desire to affect reader opinions in a particular direction. The second bias, referred to as spin, reflects the outlet’s attempt to simply create a memorable story. Competition between outlets can eliminate the effect of ideological bias, but increases the incentive to spin stories. We examine whether we find some evidence of spin in Dutch newspaper reporting on the state of the economy. If newspapers are indeed able to create memorable stories this should, according to our hypothesis, affect the opinion of readers with respect to the state of the economy. Sentiments about the actual state of the economy could be magnified by spin. As a result, consumer confidence – a variable that routinely measures the opinion on the state of the economy – can be expected to be affected not only by economic fundamentals, but also by the way these fundamentals are reported. We construct a variable that reflects the way consumers perceive economic news reported in newspapers. We find that this variable indeed has a significant impact on consumer confidence, which is short-lived.
|Date of creation:||2004|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +49 (89) 9224-0
Fax: +49 (89) 985369
Web page: http://www.cesifo.de
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2002.
Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers
1981, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- W. Jos Jansen & Niek J. Nahuis, 2002.
"The Stock Market and Consumer Confidence: European Evidence,"
MEB Series (discontinued)
2002-11, Netherlands Central Bank, Monetary and Economic Policy Department.
- Jansen, W. Jos & Nahuis, Niek J., 2003. "The stock market and consumer confidence: European evidence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 89-98, April.
- Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2005.
"The Market for News,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1031-1053, September.
- Sydney C. Ludvigson, 2004. "Consumer Confidence and Consumer Spending," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(2), pages 29-50, Spring.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1328. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Julio Saavedra)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.