OVERVIEW OF INDUSTRIAL STATISTICS AT THE OECD
Annual business survey data
Most countries carry out annual business surveys, supplementing them with censuses and with administrative sources. The OECD Statistics Directorate collects such data via a joint OECD/ UNIDO questionnaire and publishes them as Structural Statistics for Industry and Services (SSIS). For a wide range of variables, it presents manufacturing data at a very detailed level (four-digit) of ISIC Rev. 3, as well as service sectors at the three-digit level of ISIC. SSIS is used for analysis and indicator development at a very detailed level of ISIC within countries.
Annual National Accounts
National accounts are an attempt to provide balanced accounts to describe a nation's economy (usually according to international standards such as SNA93) and are compiled from a wide range of data sources with adjustments and estimations made by national experts where necessary. For activity data, much use is made of information from annual business surveys and/or censuses, short-term indicators of industrial activity (in particular the price information as a basis for estimating output volumes by industry -- see above), as well as labour force surveys, business registers, income surveys and input-output tables . National Accounts are traditionally considered more internationally comparable but lack the fine level of activity detail characteristic of business survey data. The OECD publishes national accounts by broad activities (31 ISIC Rev. 3 activity groups) within Volume II of National Accounts of OECD Countries . Greater activity detail for services on a national accounts basis are provided in Services: Statistics on Value-added and Employment.
Some differences between national accounts and annual business survey statistics
The OECD's STAN database for industrial analysis
In general, STAN attempts to combine the perceived international comparability of National Accounts and the detail of annual business surveys to provide a comprehensive data set for analysing and comparing industrial performance across countries at a relatively detailed level of activity. STAN is primarily based on Member countries' annual National Accounts by activity tables which are often available only at relatively aggregate levels -- although many countries now provide estimates at the two-digit level of ISIC Rev. 3 / NACE Rev. 1. STAN uses data compiled in SSIS to make estimates for detailed sectors not available in National Accounts. Also, since short-term indicators (IIS) are more timely than National Accounts and business survey results, they are occasionally used in STAN to make estimates for more recent years (nowcasts).