Cooking the Books

I have some good news, the United States economy is going to show some improvement soon. I also have some bad news, the only reason the economy is going to show some improvement is because the state is going to manipulate the gross domestic produce (GDP) numbers again:

The U.S. government is about to tweak the way it measures the economy, and some of the biggest changes will affect the entertainment industry.

Under the current system, Sichel told me, Lady Gaga’s sales of concert tickets, online songs and CDs all count toward gross domestic product. But the value of the time she spends in the studio working on new songs isn’t counted. That’s about to change.

This is why one cannot rely on numbers put out by the state. When the numbers begin to look bad the state just cooks the books to make things appear better than they are. That’s why reported unemployment is around 7 to 8 percent but real unemployment is around 22 to 23 percent.