Forecasting Business Conditions

By Charles O. Hardy; Garfield V. Cox | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER IX
THE STANDARD TRADE AND SECURITIES
SERVICE

Although the organization now known as the Standard Statistics Company has for 19 years engaged in the collection, organization, and sale of business statistics, it was not until 1921 that it undertook the hazardous task of business forecasting. This step was taken partly in order to render its clients a more complete service, and partly because of the fact that the organization was already spending large sums in the prompt collection and analysis of a wide range of facts which might readily serve as the basis for intelligent predictions.

The general business forecasts have been made through the medium of the Standard Trade and Securities Service and its predecessor the Standard Daily Trade Service. The company has never published a complete statement of the assumptions that underlie its forecasting work nor of the methods by which it arrives at its predictions. Every forecast, however, is supported by more or less evidence and argument, so that Standard's methods and the assumptions that underlie them are fairly clear. A survey of its forecasting work to date brings out two facts of general importance: one is that the company does not commit itself to a single fixed system as the basis of its general forecasts;

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