BS1112 Statistics for Economics
BS1112 – Statistics for Economics
Statistical Report Assignment 20/21
1 Introduction to BS1112 Statistics for Economics
Key skills required by economists are to be able to gather the correct data from a
reliable source and load it into Excel to analyse it further. For example, data has to
be summarised with descriptive statistics and analysed using different statistical test
procedures. For this Coursework, you will have to evidence all of these skills.
This assignment consists of two reports. The first report involves extracting and analysing
time-series data from the OECD webpage. It is worth 50% of the assignment mark. The
second report involves analysing cross-sectional data from the Worldbank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). The second report will be worth 50% of the assignment
Module Learning Outcomes Assessed:
• Show an understanding of descriptive and inferential statistics and be able to apply
these techniques to the analysis and presentation of data.
• Apply statistical methods to basic economics scenarios using basic software for
• Gather data from secondary sources and describe and analyse these data using
• Communicate statistical concepts and results in a clear and precise manner
Assessment Weighting for the Module:
75 per cent of the overall module mark
See Assessment Matrix on Blackboard
2 Information about Submission of BS1112 Statistics for Economics
The assignment should be uploaded onto Turnitin before the deadline specified in the
teaching. The submission deadline is 26/04/2021 at noon. A hard copy does not
have to be submitted. You will need to produce your work in a single Word document.
This will mean that any data and charts you produce in Excel will need to be imported
(copied) into Word. I strongly recommend to upload a pdf version of your report
onto Turnitin to ensure that all graphs and tables are correctly displayed. Furthermore,
Turnitin only accepts pdf or word (.doc/.docx) documents. Any other formats cannot
be opened and will receive a mark of 0.
3 Report Structure
The report should include the following sections:
• Title page
• Table of contents
• Report 1 (Time-series)
• Report 2 (Cross-section)
More information on the structure of Report 1 and 2 is provided below.
As this coursework is a report, you are encouraged to use sub-headings.
Font size and line spacing: Use 1.5 linespacing and a font size of 12 to facilitate
reading, otherwise I will soon require stronger glasses!
Referencing: You have to use consistent referencing and add a reference section at the
end (after the conclusion but before the appendix). A commonly used reference style
is British Harvard Style. Aston University has an excellent guide on referencing: Click
Word limit: 1,200 words (+/- 10%). Note that the word count does not include
references, captions, equations, the appendix, or text within tables and charts. However,
the title page, and the section headers do count. There is no page limit, only a word
4 Report 1: Time-series analysis (50%)
You are asked to prepare a statistical brief about the development of the United Kingdom
monthly unemployment rate for the period January 2015 to September 2020. You will
have to compare the development in the UK with one other country. Do not choose the
other country randomly – you will have to provide a justification why you think that the
comparison is of interest for a wider audience.
Report format and layout
Make sure that Report 1 contains the following sections:
• Main Body (Descriptive Statistics and Hypothesis Tests)
The work should be neat and tidy and easy to read. It is very important to use a
consistent reference style for both in-text citations and the list of references displayed
at the end of the report. Any data downloaded and any Excel commands used should
go into the appendix. The appendix has to be presented neatly, so do not just copy and
paste the data from the statistical webpage. The appendix is not a substitute for clear
explanations of the main part of your work. There is no page limit for the appendix.
You will have to complete the following tasks:
Task 1 – Data Collection
Download the following data from the OECD website and save it in an Excel spreadsheet:
1. ‘Monthly unemployment rate: all persons, s.a.’ for the UK for the period January
2015 to September 2020.
2. ‘Monthly unemployment rate: all persons, s.a.’ for another country of your choice
for the period January 2015 to September 2020. You have to select a country for
which data is available over the whole time period, without any gaps.
Note that s.a. stands for ‘seasonally adjusted’ which is very common for data that is
affected by seasonal patterns, i.e. monthly data.
Add all the raw data into the appendix of Part 1. Do not forget to present the data
in a user-friendly way. Also state precisely which data you have selected (Hint: Meta
data information, which can be accessed through clicking on the ‘i’ next to the variable
Task 2 – Calculations and descriptive statistics
• Calculate the monthly change in unemployment rate. The formula for changes is:
∆URt = URt − URt−1 (1)
Add the column / row of unemployment rate changes to your raw dataset in the
• Using Excel, calculate and present numeric descriptive statistics (Number of Observations, Mean, Median, Max, Min, Std. Dev. and Skewness) for unemployment
rate and changes in unemployment rate. The descriptive statistics table has to be
presented in the main body of your report.
Task 3 – Graphical Methods
You have to produce three charts:
1. Create one chart that compares unemployment rates for the period January 2015
to September 2020 of the UK with the other country you have selected.
2. Create one chart that compares changes in unemployment rates for the period
January 2015 to September 2020 of the UK with the other country you have
3. Create one chart that compares mean unemployment rates of the UK and the other
country that you have selected.
You have to choose the chart type which you think is most appropriate. Charts have to
be clearly labelled and presented. The charts have to be included in the main body of
Task 4 – Hypothesis tests
Now undertake 2 hypothesis tests:
1. Using a one-sample hypothesis test, test the claim that the UK average unemployment rate is 4.5% using a 5% significance level.
2. Using a comparison of means test, test if the average unemployment rates in the
UK and in the country of your choice are the same using a 5% significance level.
Task 5 – Write a statistical brief
Use the charts, the numerical descriptive statistics and the hypothesis-test results to
write a report on the development of the UK unemployment rates since January 2015.
You have to describe your charts, numerical descriptive statistics as well as your hypothesis tests and carefully explain your findings. Good answers will be able to link the
observations with economic theory. Include the following in each section of the report:
Introduction: Provide an outline of the topic of your report and highlight its relevance.
Also, justify the selection of the other country (word limit: 100).
Main Body: This part contains your analysis and interpretation of your findings. All
charts, the descriptive statistics table and your hypothesis-test results have to
be presented in this section. You have to state the test hypothesis and critical
values for your tests. Do not use bullet points – this is a report not a power point
presentation (word limit: 600).
Conclusion: Conclude your report by summarising your findings, provide an outlook for
further investigations and / or policy recommendations (word limit: 100).
References: Add a reference section at the end of the report conforming to the (British)
Harvard-style referencing. Present here all the source you have used throughout
Appendix: Include all the raw data in this section. Ensure that the data is well presented. Add here also any formulas and commands you have used to generate your
The overall formatting of the report, e.g. how the references and the data in the appendix
are presented, is worth 10 marks.
BS1112 Statistics for Economics
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