ALEXANDRIA, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The American Statistical Association (ASA) and its Count on Stats partners are alarmed at President Trump’s disregard for the long-standing protocols protecting the nation’s sensitive data. What may be viewed as a harmless Tweet forecasting a strong jobs report prior to its public release is in fact a breach of trust. We urge President Trump to review the directive that requires the executive branch to withhold all comments on federal data until one hour after the data have been released publicly. Such early hints about these numbers can create artificial market disruptions, which is why safeguards have been established to protect these carefully produced data. They must be released at the correct time, without hints or insinuations.
Threats to the integrity of federal statistics and to the agencies that produce these data is a threat to us all. These data provide key insights into economic trends, public health, crime and justice, food production and supply, our education system, and countless other facets that are critical to our everyday lives. The data must continue to be available, accurate, and appropriately handled by those in power.
The proper handling of federal statistics, including the jobs report issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is essential to our economy, society, and democracy. Anything less is a disservice to our nation. The federal statistical community follows the protocols governing their activities designed to protect the integrity of our federal statistics. The President should do the same.
About the American Statistical Association
The American Statistical Association is the world’s largest community of statisticians and the second-oldest continuously operating professional society in the United States. Its members serve in industry, government and academia in more than 90 countries, advancing research and promoting sound statistical practice to inform public policy and improve human welfare. For additional information about the American Statistical Association, please visit the ASA website at http://www.amstat.org/.