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New From the GAO

October 2, 2014 Comments off

New GAO Reports
Source: Government Accountability Office
1. 2020 Census: Census Bureau Can Improve Use of Leading Practices When Choosing Address and Mapping Sources. GAO-15-21, October 2.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-15-21
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/666344.pdf

2. Compounded Drugs: TRICARE’s Payment Practices Should Be More Consistent with Regulations. GAO-15-64, October 2.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-15-64
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/666338.pdf

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College Enrollment Declines for Second Year in a Row, Census Bureau Reports

October 2, 2014 Comments off

College Enrollment Declines for Second Year in a Row, Census Bureau Reports
Source: U.S. Census Bureau

College enrollment declined by close to half a million (463,000) between 2012 and 2013, marking the second year in a row that a drop of this magnitude has occurred. The cumulative two-year drop of 930,000 was larger than any college enrollment drop before the recent recession, according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics from the Current Population Survey released today. The Census Bureau began collecting data on college enrollment in this survey in 1966.

As the nation’s students and teachers return to the classroom, the Census Bureau has published School Enrollment in the United States: 2013, detailing national-level statistics on the characteristics of students, from nursery school to graduate school. The data were collected in the October School Enrollment Supplement to the 2013 Current Population Survey.

U.S. Census Bureau: Addressing Data Collection Vulnerabilities

September 30, 2014 Comments off

U.S. Census Bureau: Addressing Data Collection Vulnerabilities
Source: U.S House of Representatives, Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

Among the report’s findings:

  • The Census Bureau’s lack of recordkeeping and deficient data collection system fostered an environment in which data falsification could occur.
  • The suspected falsification procedures are inconsistent from region to region and from case to case. The system relies on paper-based forms, making it vulnerable to error and deliberate circumvention.
  • Data quality assurance efforts are fundamentally flawed. Regional offices are responsible for both data collection and quality control, which often have conflicting objectives.
  • Philadelphia Regional Office supervisors regularly emphasized the importance of obtaining survey response rates, with little to no mention of data integrity. Employees experienced significant pressure to achieve and improve their response rates by any means possible. Pressure to meet these requirements stemmed from both the Regional Office and Census National Headquarters.
  • The current mechanisms for data quality control are insufficient and could serve to discourage individuals from identifying and reporting suspected falsification.
  • The primary data quality assurance check—reinterview—remains in the original interviewer’s chain of command, effectively diminishing the objectivity of the process.
  • There are no clear guidelines available to all Census employees for straightforward reporting of suspected falsification.
  • There is no single master record of a case. The case-tracking systems make it difficult—sometimes impossible—to determine the full history and corresponding chain of custody of a particular case.

2012 Business Dynamics Statistics

September 30, 2014 Comments off

2012 Business Dynamics Statistics
Source: U.S. Census Bureau

The Business Dynamics Statistics provide annual statistics on establishments, firms, and job creation and job destruction from 1976 to 2012 by firm age and size. These statistics are crucial to understanding current and historical U.S. entrepreneurial activity. The statistics come from a collaboration between the Census Bureau’s Center for Economic Studies, the Small Business Administration, and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, an American nonprofit organization that focuses on entrepreneurship.
For the first time, this data will be available in the . The API allows more access and easier customization of data products. Developers could use the statistics available through the API to create a variety of apps and tool.

Further information on the Business Dynamics Statistics release can be found at <http://www.census.gov/ces/dataproducts/bds/data.html>.

The Business Dynamics Statistics visualization tools can be found at <http://www.census.gov/ces/dataproducts/bds/visualizations.html>.

Economic Growth Widespread Across Metropolitan Areas in 2013

September 30, 2014 Comments off

Economic Growth Widespread Across Metropolitan Areas in 2013
Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis

Real GDP increased in 292 of the nation’s 381 metropolitan areas in 2013, led by widespread growth in finance, insurance, real estate, rental, and leasing, nondurable-goods manufacturing, and professional and business services, according to new statistics released today by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. Natural resources and mining also spurred strong growth in several metropolitan areas. Collectively, real GDP for U.S. metropolitan areas increased 1.7 percent in 2013 after increasing 2.6 percent in 2012.

Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2013

September 19, 2014 Comments off

Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2013
Source: U.S. Census Bureau

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that in 2013, the poverty rate declined from the previous year for the first time since 2006, while there was no statistically significant change in either the number of people living in poverty or real median household income. In addition, the poverty rate for children under 18 declined from the previous year for the first time since 2000. The following results for the nation were compiled from information collected in the 2014 Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement.

The nation’s official poverty rate in 2013 was 14.5 percent, down from 15.0 percent in 2012. The 45.3 million people living at or below the poverty line in 2013, for the third consecutive year, did not represent a statistically significant change from the previous year’s estimate.

Median household income in the United States in 2013 was $51,939; the change in real terms from the 2012 median of $51,759 was not statistically significant. This is the second consecutive year that the annual change was not statistically significant, following two consecutive annual declines.

The percentage of people without health insurance coverage for the entire 2013 calendar year was 13.4 percent; this amounted to 42.0 million people.

Characteristics of New Single-Family Houses Completed

September 13, 2014 Comments off

Characteristics of New Single-Family Houses Completed
Source: U.S. Census Bureau

The new tables for New Single-Family Houses Completed include data on age-restricted developments, presence of homeowner’s association, foyer, framing, sewer and water systems and laundry. These tables show data back to 2009.

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