US, semiconductor industry strike deal on data

May 27, 2003 – The US government and the semiconductor industry have reached an agreement to reintroduce data that have been missing from federal economic reports for more than a year, US and industry officials said, according to Reuters.

The government will begin providing figures on shipments by semiconductor firms with a report on July durable goods orders that is set for release on August 26, Commerce Under-Secretary Kathleen Cooper said in an interview.

Cooper said, however, data on semiconductor orders, which the industry feels provide an inaccurate picture of activity, would not be provided. She also said inventory data would only be incorporated within overall figures for the computers and electronic products sector, not broken out separately.

Cooper said the gap in industry data that dates back to last March would be filled in when benchmark revisions to the durable goods series are released on August 19.

Officials have said the lack of information on the industry has adversely impacted the quality of several economic reports, including the quarterly figures on gross domestic product.

The problem arose when the number of large semiconductor manufacturers participating in a voluntary monthly survey fell so low that the Census Bureau, a statistical arm of the Commerce Department, stopped providing data on the industry.


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