Economists Do It With Models

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Billboard Hot 100 Indicators

Hi everyone! As an economist, I’m always poking around for data sets that I can use to answer relevant research questions. In addition, I often look for publicly available data that I can give my students to play around with. When I was teaching a research methods course for the Music Industry Leadership Program at Northeastern University, I had my students use the Billboard chart data available on to create some summary statistics and practice working with data. At this same time, I was working in the finance industry, where I was helping to create indicators that summarize the trade and holdings behavior of institutional investors and, because of their predictive power, are used to guide investment decisions.

As a result, it seemed only natural that I would use the Billboard data to create an analogous set of indicators that would summarize the music industry (or at least part of it) and perhaps eventually provide guidance in business decisions. This is still a work in progress, but the following metrics are available so far:

In addition to the time-series graphs found at the links above, I am updating the data each week (as new Billboard data is published) and publishing an index of the latest numbers as well as predictions of future rankings. If this sounds interesting to you, you will likely find the following links helpful:

Enjoy! If you have any suggestions, opportunities for related research, etc., feel free to drop me a line at econgirl at economistsdoitwithmodels dot com.