Balance Method in Statistics

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Balance Method in Statistics


a highly important method of processing and analyzing statistical data that makes it possible to mutually coordinate resources and their use and to uncover the proportions and interconnections that evolve in the process of reproduction (yosproizvodstvo). The balance method in statistics has come into wide use in the USSR. The great value of this method is determined by the character of the Soviet economy and stems from the law of planned development of the national economy, which operates under socialism. By means of the balance method one can not only uncover economic relations and proportions in the national economy but also bring out disproportions where they occur.

Any balance consists of two balancing parts—income and expenditure. The income part takes account of all resources (such as reserves at the beginning of the year, production, and imports), while the expenditure part takes account of all types of use (for production needs, nonproductive use, exports, creation of reserves, and others) and reserves at the end of the year. Various types of balances are drawn up in the practice of Soviet statistics, and they can be broken down into four groups. The first group consists of balances that characterize the resources of individual products and their distribution and use in the national economy. These balances are made up, as a rule, in physical units. They comprise balances drawn up for certain types of ferrous and nonferrous metals, fuel, chemicals, and building and timber materials, and for certain types of machinery and equipment. They can also be drawn up in consolidated form for a group of products (for example, a fuel and power balance). The second group comprises various types of labor balances—a balance of labor resources and a balance of the availability and utilization of labor. The third group comprises balances that characterize the formation of financial (monetary) resources and their utilization for various purposes in the national economy and in individual branches—a consolidated balance of financial resources, balances of income and expenditure for individual branches, the state budget, the credit plan of the State Bank (Gosbank), a balance of the monetary income and expenditure of the population, the cash plan of the Gosbank, and so forth. The fourth group comprises the balance of the national economy, which is a system of the most general synoptic balances, characterizing the entire process of social reproduction as a whole: a consolidated material balance of social product and national income; a balance of the production, distribution, and redistribution of the social product and national income (financial balance); a balance of fixed capital stock; a balance of labor; and other synthesizing balances. The balance method finds its highest development in the balance of the national economy.

A great deal of attention is devoted to drawing up an inter-sector balance of production and distribution of social product and to its use for analyzing socialist reproduction and the planning of the national economy. This balance is a part of the balance of the national economy and is intended to provide a detailed description of intersector ties in the national economy, with a large number of branches and products given separately.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.