They may not know it, but web users who type “unemployment”, “estate agents” or “VAT” into Google are helping the Bank of England to gather information on the state of the British economy.
The central bank is turning to internet search data as it seeks to widen its understanding of unemployment, consumer spending and the housing market.
Research has shown evidence of a correlation between the volume of certain search terms on Google and economic data from traditional surveys. Although the Bank admits that the approach has its limitations, it believes online search data can be an increasingly useful source of intelligence about the state of the UK.
See Also: Correlate Your Own Data With Google Correlate (Free)
How About Making Financial Decisions Based on Tweets?
“The World’s First Twitter-Based Hedge Fund Is Finally Open” (via The Atlantic)