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Production, Sales, and the Change in Inventories: An Identity That Doesn`t Add Up

  • Jeffrey A. Miron
  • Stephen P. Zeldes

We examine two measures of monthly manufacturing production. The first is the index of industrial production; the second is constructed from the accounting identity that output equals sales plus the change in inventories. We show that the means, variances, and serial correlation coefficients of the log growth races differ substantially between the two series, and the cross-correlations between the two seasonally adjusted series are in most cases less than .4. A model of classical measurement error indicates chat in 15 of 20 2-digit industries measurement error accounts for over 35% of the variation in the monthly growth rates of seasonally adjusted industrial production.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 2765.

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Date of creation: Nov 1988
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Publication status: published as "Production, Sales, and the Change in Inventories." From Journal of Monetary Economics, Vol. 24, No. 1, pp. 31-51, (July 1989).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2765
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  1. Alan S. Blinder, 1986. "Can the Production Smoothing Model of Inventory Behavior be Saved?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 101(3), pages 431-453.
  2. Lichtenberg, Frank R & Griliches, Zvi, 1989. "Errors of Measurement in Output Deflators," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 7(1), pages 1-9, January.
  3. N. Gregory Mankiw & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1986. "News or Noise? An Analysis of GNP Revisions," NBER Working Papers 1939, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. West, Kenneth D., 1983. "A note on the econometric use of constant dollar inventory series," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 337-341.
  5. Reagan, Patricia & Sheehan, Dennis P., 1985. "The stylized facts about the behavior of manufacturers' inventories and backorders over the business cycle: 1959-1980," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 217-246, March.
  6. Eichenbaum, Martin S., 1984. "Rational expectations and the smoothing properties of inventories of finished goods," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 71-96, July.
  7. West, Kenneth D, 1986. "A Variance Bounds Test of the Linear Quadratic Inventory Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(2), pages 374-401, April.
  8. Newey, Whitney K & West, Kenneth D, 1987. "A Simple, Positive Semi-definite, Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 703-08, May.
  9. Maccini, Louis J & Rossana, Robert J, 1984. "Joint Production, Quasi-Fixed Factors of Production, and Investement in Finished Goods Inventories," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 16(2), pages 218-36, May.
  10. Alan C. Stockman, 1987. "Sectoral and National Aggregate Disturbances to Industrial Output in Seven European Countries," NBER Working Papers 2313, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Christopher A. Sims, 1974. "Output and Labor Input in Manufacturing," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 5(3), pages 695-736.
  12. Jeffrey A. Miron & Stephen P. Zeldes, 1987. "Seasonality, Cost Shocks, and the Production Smoothing Model of Inventories," NBER Working Papers 2360, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. John Y. Campbell & N. Gregory Mankiw, 1988. "International Evidence on the Persistence of Economic Fluctuations," NBER Working Papers 2498, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Kahn, James A, 1987. "Inventories and the Volatility of Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 667-79, September.
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