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Correlates of Data Quality in the Consumer Expenditure Quarterly Interview Survey

Jennifer Edgar and Jeffrey M. Gonzalez


The Consumer Expenditure Quarterly Interview Survey (CEQ) is an ongoing panel survey which collects detailed expenditure information from a national sample of households. High data quality is essential to accurately reflect the spending habits of American consumers. This study examines CEQ data quality in terms of the editing required during the data processing phase. Editing methods include imputation of item missing data and allocation of expenses reported in aggregate across different items. We explore the relationship between this measure of data quality and a variety of covariates, including respondent characteristics (e.g., educational attainment), household characteristics (e.g., relationship of persons living within the household), and interview characteristics (e.g., use of interviewing aids). We find that many of these factors are significantly associated with data quality.