The Division of Price and Index Number Research (PINR) conducts research to strengthen and improve existing price and expenditure measurement concepts and techniques and enhance the analytical usefulness of BLS programs.

Contact information about specific BLS data may be found at www.bls.gov/bls/contact.htm

Overview

Division of Price and Index Number Research

The Division was created in 1963 in response to the Stigler Commission Report on Federal price statistics. It has had a long and successful professional history, both in providing economic consulting services to the Bureau and in serving as a source of, and conduit for, new ideas in the economics profession.

A large portion of Division staff time is devoted to individual, long term research on both theoretical and empirical topics. Traditionally, Division research has been oriented toward resolution of measurement problems, using a wide range of methods from microeconomic and macroeconomic theory, consumer economics, industrial organization, labor economics, mathematical economics, econometrics, and statistics.

The Division also provides consulting services to the other price program Divisions as the need arises. For example, staff members have worked with analysts from the Consumer Price Program to develop and analyze the new C-CPI-U (superlative price index). Currently consulting efforts also include projects involving the Producer Price Index Program and the Consumer Expenditure Surveys.

Current research includes:

  • Evaluating the differences between Consumer Expenditure Survey and Personal Consumption Expenditure (PCE) data, and comparing the PCE deflator to the CPI.
  • Evaluating the measurement of health insurance prices.
  • Development of an alternative price index for college tuition
  • Evaluating the methodology of quality adjustment in the CPI
  • Developing hedonic methodologies for consumer audio products, personal computers, and televisions.
  • Evaluating the methodology for measuring the services from home-ownership in the CPI.
  • Examining the differences in measures of price change for different demographic groups.

 

PINR Publications

 

PINR Frequently Asked Questions

 

Related Links

Other BLS Programs

  • Consumer Price Indexes—Monthly data on changes in the prices paid by urban consumers for a representative basket of goods and services
  • Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE)—program consists of two surveys, the quarterly Interview Survey and the Diary Survey, that provide information on the buying habits of American consumers, including data on their expenditures, income, and consumer unit (families and single consumers) characteristics. The survey data are collected for the Bureau of Labor Statistics by the U.S. Census Bureau.
  • International Price Program—produces Import/Export Price Indexes (MXP) containing data on changes in the prices of nonmilitary goods and services traded between the U.S. and the rest of the world.
  • Producer Price Index—program measures the average change over time in the selling prices received by domestic producers for their output. The prices included in the PPI are from the first commercial transaction for many products and some services.

Contact Us

General Information
    (202) 691-6573
Division Chief
  Vacant (202) 691-6997
Research Economists
  Bradley, Ralph (202) 691-6575
  Erickson, Timothy (202) 691-5145
  Garner, Thesia (202) 691-6576
  Kim, Mina (202) 691-6596
  Kurtzon, Greg (202) 691-6574
  Sager, Erick (202) 691-6585
  Sullivan, Paul (202) 691-6593
  To, Theodore (202) 691-6590
  Zadrozny, Peter (202) 691-6591
Economists
  Gudrais, Marisa (202) 691-6568
  Sabetti, Leonard (202) 691-6586