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Huang, Y, Niu, Z and Yang, C (2020)

Testing firm-level data quality in China against Benford’s Law

Economics Letters 192, 109182.

ISSN/ISBN: Not available at this time. DOI: 10.1016/j.econlet.2020.109182

Abstract: The authenticity of China’s economic data has long been questioned. We use a new statistical method, Benford’s test, to evaluate data quality of the Chinese Industrial Census (CIC). We show that the method is effective to uncover data irregularities. Based on predicted industrial output by variables that are less manipulatable, such as employment and electricity, we further demonstrate that firms of different ownership types display different behavior in terms of the direction of data manipulation. We find no conclusive evidence of data manipulation by state-owned enterprises (SOEs), whereas private firms tend to under-report performance.

@article{, title = "Testing firm-level data quality in China against Benford’s Law", journal = "Economics Letters", volume = "192", pages = "109182", year = "2020", issn = "0165-1765", doi = "", url = "", author = "Yasheng Huang and Zhiyong Niu and Clair Yang", }

Reference Type: Journal Article

Subject Area(s): Economics