What purpose is served by the production figures Squealer reads to the animals in "Animal Farm"?
"There were times when it seemed to the animals that they worked longer hours and were fed no better than they had in Jones’s day. On Sunday mornings Squealer, holding a long strip of paper with his trotter, would read out to them lists of figures proving that the production of every class of foodstuff had increased by two hundred per cent, three hundred per cent, or five hundred per cent as the case might be.”
Squealer is Mr. Propaganda. It is his job to keep the animals on the farm - the workers - happy so that they will continue to produce. However, because the pigs (Napoleon specifically) have become selfish tyrants who want to keep all good things for themselves, Squealer can't keep the animals happy by actually giving them the things that they desire. Instead, Squealer tricks them to make them believe that they are treated well and should be happy. The production figures are done for that purpose. Squealer is giving the animals factual data that things are actually better for them than when Jones was in charge. Because the animals have no way to challenge that data, they are persuaded to believe that their perception is incorrect and that Squealer is right.