News flash: Governments shouldn’t fudge the figures!
Bloomberg quotes European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet today as saying in a speech that it’s important for governments to provide “reliable” statistics to help boost confidence in the 16-nation euro region.
The mind boggles.
“While the government finance statistics of the overwhelming majority of member states is reliable, this does not apply to all of them,” Trichet said at a conference in Frankfurt today. “We need reliable statistics not just from the majority of member states, we need it from each and everyone, no matter how large or how small the country is. We have seen that the potential for loss of credibility affects the entire union.”
He also said that “the financial crisis has revealed information gaps that we have to close while also preparing ourselves for future challenges. This is best achieved through creating a wide range of economic and financial statistics that are mutually consistent, thereby eliminating contradictory signals due to measurement issues.”