This information paper provides a wide-ranging discussion of aspects related to the quality of the Australian national accounts statistics. The paper updates and extends the discussion of quality issues contained in Chapter 29 of the ABS publication, Australian System of National Accounts, Concepts, Sources and Methods, 2000 (cat. no. 5216.0) and in the Feature Article 'A Quality Assessment of the National Accounts Information System' published in the March quarter 2003 edition of the Australian National Accounts: National Income and Expenditure (cat. no. 5206.0).
The paper first discusses the issues associated with, and factors that influence, the overall quality of statistical data and specifically, national accounts data. It then discusses how the use of a quality framework can facilitate the assessment of the effectiveness of the national accounts statistical program against a set of defined quality dimensions. The paper then provides a broad assessment of the national accounts program against the six quality dimensions that make up the ABS quality framework. This includes a description of recent work undertaken by the ABS to determine the impact of revisions on the overall quality of national accounts outputs.
The ABS invites comments from interested readers as to the usefulness and accuracy of this type of analysis as a guide to the implications of data quality issues when using ABS national accounts statistics. Your comments will assist the ABS in prioritising quality related tasks in its national accounts forward work program and in determining the frequency and content of future publications and articles dealing with quality issues. Your comments should be forwarded to Michael Smedes (firstname.lastname@example.org).