Submit a PDF copy of your written answers to me before midnight Halifax time on the due date. This assignment is worth 15 marks but will be graded out of 50 points. Read the information carefully.
Part 1: Accessing Statistics Canada Data Tables (total 25 points)
Statistics Canada maintains an open-access time series database. You can find it by going to Statistics Canada’s main page (https://www.statcan.gc.ca/eng/start ) and clicking on the ‘Data’ tab near the top of the page.The database contains Canadian data on a wide variety of economic variables including prices, national accounts, financial data and labour data. The data is presented in table format and there are options to customize the tables.You can save the data in worksheet and other formats.
You need to retrieve data on two variables (5 points):
Finding and saving the data:
– Once you are on the Statistic Canada site and have clicked on the Data tab you will see that there are a couple of search options:
– After clicking the Table number you are given the default version of the relevant Data table.This is typically not what quite you want! To customize the table click the “Add/Remove data” tab.This will give you a set of options that allows you to specify the precise data series you want to retrieve.Let’s look at the particular variables you need for this question.
1) take the Consumer Price Index (CPI) series. You want the table containing monthly data. Click the table number and then under the “Add/remove data” tab choose the appropriate options, i.e. choose Canada under Geography, choose “All-items” as the indicated Product group. Also set the “Reference Period” to the appropriate years (January 2001-August 2020).If you wish you can also change the Layout of the display format (I like to have the ‘Reference period’ as rows). Once you have indicated exactly what you want you can click “Apply” and an “html” version of the results table will be displayed.You can cut and paste the data from this table or click “Download” which will give you a page that allows you to save the table in spreadsheet format (CSV).You can open the saved file with Excel.
2) now take the Average Hourly Earnings series.Find the table entitled: “Average hourly earnings for employees paid by the hour, by industry, monthly, unadjusted for seasonality.’This contains data from the Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Hours (SEPH).
Retrieve average hourly earnings series indicated above following the same steps as used to obtain the CPI data, i.e. use ‘Add/Remove Data’ to customize your search.Make sure to select Canadian data for the “industrial aggregate excluding unclassified businesses” and make sure that the series includes overtime.Also specify the appropriate time periods for each table.Before you leave this table also answer part (c) of this question.
Part 2: Labour Force Survey Questionnaire and survey methods (total 25 points)
The Labour Force Survey (LFS) is Canada’s main source of monthly data on labour market outcomes including the level of employment, the unemployment rate and wage levels. Most other national statistical agencies have a similar survey e.g. the Current Population Survey in the United States.
The Guide to the Labour Force Survey (see attached in the course website) discusses the survey methods and basic definitions. To get some idea of where the data is coming from you can look at the Labour Force Survey questionnaire (it starts on page 50 of the Guide to the Labour Force Survey)The survey collects information on personal characteristics (age, sex, education, etc. – see pp. 52-54 and labour force information (see p. 55 starting with Question 100).If the person is working in the survey week, a number of questions are asked about their job and working conditions. If the person is not working during the survey week questions are asked that aim to determine if the person is unemployed or not in the labour force.Go through the questionnaire and get a feel for the types of information the survey collects.Based on the questionnaire answer the following questions:
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