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st: Alternative to coefficient of variation (CV)/relative standard error as a measure of estimate's reliability/stability


From   "David Radwin" <dradwin@mprinc.com>
To   <statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu>
Subject   st: Alternative to coefficient of variation (CV)/relative standard error as a measure of estimate's reliability/stability
Date   Tue, 12 Jun 2012 16:37:33 -0700 (PDT)

Dear Statalisters,

I hope you will indulge me this statistics question that is not strictly
Stata-specific. I am looking for a statistic measuring an estimate's
reliability or stability as an alternative to the coefficient of variation
(CV), also known as the relative standard error. The CV is the standard
error of an estimate (proportion, mean, regression coefficient, etc.)
divided by the estimate itself, usually expressed as a percentage. For
example, if a survey finds 15% unemployment with a 6% standard error, the
CV is .06/.15 = .4 = 40%. 

Some US government agencies flag or suppress as unreliable any estimate
with a CV over a certain threshold such as 30% or 50%. But this standard
can be arbitrary (for example, 85% employment would have a much lower CV
of .06/.85 = 7%) and has other limitations.

Can anyone suggest an alternative measure of stability or reliability?

David
--
David Radwin
Senior Research Associate
MPR Associates, Inc.
2150 Shattuck Ave., Suite 800
Berkeley, CA 94704
Phone: 510-849-4942
Fax: 510-849-0794

www.mprinc.com


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