Online Program

Harmonisation of practices for infra-annual macroeconomic statistics at Eurostat: a rationalised approach based on tools, guidelines and handbooks
*Gian Luigi Mazzi, Eurostat 
Rosa Teresa Ruggeri Cannata, Eurostat  

Keywords: Generalized systems, time series, monitoring, harmonization

The recent crisis stressed a strong requirement for quality and timely information to design effective macroeconomic policies, despite the lack of official statistics. Statisticians can provide, beside official statistics, estimates and indicators based on statistically sound methodologies, a strong quality framework, transparent and well documented procedures. This is in line with the joint Eurostat-UNSD actions to develop a real-time monitoring and early warning system by integrating official statistics and econometric techniques. To ensure a coordinated approach, Eurostat is working at fostering the harmonisation of practices in nowcasting, backcasting, composite and cyclical indicators by means of handbooks, guidelines and tools. Handbooks give a topic overall picture, addressing main methodological issues and describing best practices. Guidelines propose alternatives in a pragmatic way, taking into account existing constraints of statistical or technical nature. Finally, it is necessary to supply data producers with a set of standardised tools developed so as to be compliant with guidelines in order to strengthen the harmonisation of practices and the comparability of results.