Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Happy Birthday, "Your Better Life Index"

One year ago, the OECD released its Your Better Life Index. The Index sought to provide comparative data relating to well-being that go beyond the traditional economic output measures such as GDP.

I analyzed some of the YBLI data in a few posts last year - here, here, and here.

The YBLI has been re-released (updated) today. The OECD tells us:

"Some of the key takeaways from the new version of the Index include:
  • No matter which countries people live in, they value the most some combination of  health, education and life satisfaction.
  • Men and women who have used the Index value basically the same things.
  • The wealthier you are, the more likely you are to make your voice heard in elections, but not by a huge margin.
  • Men work more in the labour market and make more money than women, but women are better in other areas, they live longer, are better educated and in most places they are also happier.
  • Inequality isn’t just about money, it affects other topics in Your Better Life Index."
BTW, if you have an interest in these issues, then the Freedom and Flourishing blog that Winton Bates writes should be on your reading list.

© 2012, David E. Giles

Log Transformations & Forecasting

I enjoyed reading the lead article in the latest issue of Empirical Economics, by Helmut L├╝tkepohl and Fang Xu. It assesses the quality of forecasts obtained from an ARIMA model that is estimated using the levels of the data in question, as opposed to forecasts that are generated from a model estimated from the logarithms of the data.