Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
More from the bad statistics department
Old 04-16-2005, 12:50 PM   #1
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
More from the bad statistics department

Was just perusing some information regarding several of the more closely watched 'confidence indexes'.

Fairly disgusting stuff.

In many, they survey under a thousand people. Not even an order of magnitude away from making statistically insignificant.

A lot consist of loaded questions like "Are you happy with the current administrations policies that are improving our economic situation?", or they include complex questions the average joe simply wouldnt understand, but will respond to because they dont want to appear uninformed.

Then several apply 'weighting' and 'slimming' (their words, not mine) where they eliminate 'excessive negative or positive answers' and add a positive bias to sets of answers they 'believe may be unfairly biased to a negative'. One formula added nearly a 50% positive bias to questions the 'researchers' felt led to unfairly negative answers.

Why dont they just make up the numbers they want to publish, wordsmith a statement to that effect that most people wouldnt understand and bury it 3 layers deep in a footnote of an explanation linked to a white paper thats mentioned in the chart but only available by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope to some address in Pueblo Colorado?

Sure would save a lot of time.

What grinds my coffee is that a fair number of these 'statistics' are closely watched by 'market movers', who swoop in to buy and sell based on the absolutely, completely bogus results.

:P :P :P :P :P :P
__________________

__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

YouRe: More from the bad statistics department
Old 04-16-2005, 01:31 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Houston
Posts: 1,435
YouRe: More from the bad statistics department

You can come up with a statistic to prove anything. 47% of people know that.
__________________

__________________
soupcxan is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: More from the bad statistics department
Old 04-16-2005, 08:43 PM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
Re: More from the bad statistics department

Actually its 48%...
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: More from the bad statistics department
Old 04-17-2005, 03:38 AM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3,875
Re: More from the bad statistics department

It's been proven that 99% of all statistics are wrong
anyway

The old line "figures don't lie but liers figure" comes to mind here.

JG
__________________
MRGALT2U is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: More from the bad statistics department
Old 04-17-2005, 06:42 AM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
BUM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Mid Hudson Valley
Posts: 1,778
Re: More from the bad statistics department

Its getting down to making your own choices in life. In healthcare I'm used to the phrase "informed consent". You know one of the forms you sign before any procedure is done. Yes, you are informed, period. The quality of the info and applicability to you specifically is questionable.

In the northeast too many news items start with "A Marist Public Opinion Institute poll reveals..." Well I live near Marist College and the questions they ask couldnt be less revealing.

Here is an example of one of their routine questions:

In general, thinking about the way things are going in the country, do you feel things are going in the right direction or that things are going in the wrong direction?

Now a bunch of college kids collect a few thousand answers to the above question. What could you do with this info...anything you want.
__________________
In a panamax down by the river.
BUM is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: More from the bad statistics department
Old 04-17-2005, 05:19 PM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Sheryl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,459
Re: More from the bad statistics department

I wanted to be sure I was correctly stating one of my favorite quotes: "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics."

In the process of searching for it, I found this, which is more interesting anyway:

http://www.zealllc.com/commentary/damnlies.htm
__________________
Sheryl is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: More from the bad statistics department
Old 04-21-2005, 08:36 PM   #7
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 163
Re: More from the bad statistics department

That is an interesting article, but I don't quite buy its doom-and-gloom scenario. He makes a pretty strong point that the total money supply has risen a lot, and more than CPI. Then he says that this will lead to a lot of inflation because when more money chases fewer goods, there is inflation. At no point does he say anything about the amount of available goods, though. I'm very willing to believe that there is a significant, real growth in the amount of goods there are to go around. These are generated eg. by more efficient farming techniques, imports from China, etc.

Tim
__________________

__________________
nuisance is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Age-based SWR strategies taking more sophisticated account mortality statistics? Grep FIRE and Money 0 03-16-2007 12:31 PM
Bad News for Indy... mickeyd Other topics 2 10-20-2006 12:30 PM
bad gateway error mathjak107 Forum Admin 0 09-24-2006 03:57 AM
Nords! - We have good news and bad news!............ Cut-Throat Life after FIRE 16 09-13-2006 02:26 PM
SWR in bad times sgeeeee FIRE and Money 37 02-16-2004 02:11 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:19 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.