Measuring the Economy with Underwear and Puppies

One of the great things about the economy is that it's quantifiable. You can measure stuff like gross domestic product and retail sales. But really, could that be more boring? Who can get excited about leading economic indicators? Seems to us what we need are some good offbeat alternatives. Some trend that'll give us some context about what's happening that straight statistics don't.

Listen to David Brancaccio talk alternative indicators on Marketplace:

About the author

Stan Alcorn is a multimedia journalist in New York City. He has reported for NPR and WNYC, where he has focused on business and the New York tech scene.

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