The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) is celebrating the centennial of the Survey of Current Business (SCB), the publication for BEA's data, including national, regional, industrial, and international economic accounts.

The Survey of Current Business

The Survey of Current Business (SCB) has served since the early 1920s as the journal of record for the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). 

It offers a variety of articles monthly, including detailed presentations about recent data releases, relevant research by BEA economists, briefings on key issues, and ongoing statistical and related innovations in general.

Tables, charts, and links to interactive data sets, which include charting and mapping functions, are included with just about every article.

BEA will present over the next 12 months a look back at a century of achievements and innovation to highlight each decade of its history with original articles, reprints from the BEA archives, profiles of top influencers, downloadable posters, and other historical content.

Check back here on the Centennial website through June 2021 for new material on the survey, such as feature articles on new topics and on recurring themes from current and former BEA staff, academics, and researchers.

  • Coming in August: The Origins of the Survey of Current Business by Andrew Reamer.


BEA's Role in the Federal Statistical System

BEA produces economic accounts statistics that enable government and business decision-makers, researchers, and the American public to follow and understand the performance of the Nation's economy.  To do this, BEA collects source data, conducts research and analysis, develops and implements estimation methodologies, and disseminates statistics to the public. 

BEA produces some of the most closely watched economic statistics that influence the decisions made by government officials, business people, households, and individuals.

BEA's economic statistics, which provide a comprehensive, up-to-date picture of the U.S. economy, are key ingredients in critical decisions affecting monetary policy, tax and budget projections, and business investment plans.

The cornerstone of BEA's statistics is the National Income and Product Accounts (NIPAs), which feature the estimates of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and related measures. 

The GDP was recognized by the Department of Commerce as its greatest achievement of the 20th century, and has been ranked as one of the three most influential measures that affect U.S. financial markets.

Since the NIPAs were first developed in the aftermath of the Great Depression, BEA has developed and extended its estimates to cover a wide range of economic activities.