ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Suitability of Different Reference Periods for Measuring Household Consumption

This paper reports on the results of an NSSO pilot survey aimed at ascertaining the most reliable reference period for collecting data on key items of household consumption, falling within the group 'food, paan, tobacco and intoxicants'. The periods evaluated were 'last month', 'last week' and 'yesterday'. The survey was conducted in January-June 2000 in five Indian states, as well as the country's four big cities. Results suggest that for many items, shorter reference periods, particularly 'last week', may be preferable to the 30-day reference periods currently being used as the basis for NSS consumer expenditure estimates.

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