Sales taxes collected (from retailers) would be a great proxy for general economic activity. Using sales tax data, you could get a rough idea of the revenues collected by retailers in a given area. Since it's tax information, my gut tells me this type of information should be available. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to locate anything like this so far (I filed a FOIL request a few months ago and never heard back). Specifically I'm interested in sales taxes in NYC, but any info on taxes collected in the US could be useful. Any ideas?
I have not come across this data for NYC (though would also be really interested in it if the data existed publicly somewhere!), but know that you can get sales tax receipts for a few categories for the state of Texas at least.
The state of Texas publishes sales tax receipts data on the following areas:
- Mixed beverage (think bar receipts)
- Hotel occupancy
These datasets include:
- Company name
- Company address
- Reported tax
- Gross receipts
(Full disclosure: I work for Enigma.)
This question is one year old, but still: https://www.census.gov/govs/statetax/historical_data.html isn't this what you need?