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  • Author(s):
    Thomas A. Stapleford
    Abstract:

    This essay explores the history of the 1935-1936 Study of Consumer Purchases, an extraordinary national survey of family incomes and expenditures undertaken by the federal government during the New Deal. Created and administered primarily left-leaning economists, the project was an order of magnitude larger and more complex than any previous expenditure survey and was intended to aid and justify state-led economic planning. Yet it failed to be an effective help to New Deal reformers, proving …

    Date Published:
    2007-09