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Program Assessment


View Assessment Details

Census Bureau: Current Economic Statistics and Census of Governments

The purpose of the programs is to provide relevant, accurate, and timely national statistical profiles for every non-farm sector of the U.S. economy including state and local governments. Economic surveys occur on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis, while the census of governments occurs twice a decade.


What This Rating Means

Moderately Effective

In general, a program rated Moderately Effective has set ambitious goals and is well-managed. Moderately Effective programs likely need to improve their efficiency or address other problems in the programs' design or management in order to achieve better results.
  • The programs are moderately effective in providing data users an accurate profile of the non-farm sectors of the U.S. economy. These programs address the need to provide comprehensive economic statistics, critical to understanding the current conditions of the U.S. economy.
  • The Current Economic Statistics (CES) program collects data from businesses and state and local governments. The program uses administrative records for data editing and, where feasible, data collection to reduce reporting burden. Reporting burden is also minimized by the extensive use of sampling.
  • This assessment found that the Bureau needs to continually reevaluate the overall mix of its surveys to make sure that they are accurately covering the entire non-farm economy, especially the service sector. Currently, the program has extensive manufacturing coverage, but has inadequate coverage of the service sector, which accounts for over half of the nation's overall economic activity.

Improvement Plan

About Improvement Plans

We are taking the following actions to improve the performance of the program:

  • Improving the relevance of CES data by improving measurement of the services sector.
  • Conduct systematic evaluations of resource allocations within these programs.

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