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Ons Revises Controversial Output Figures

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Industry leaders poured scorn on the ONS’s original estimate for construction output in the first quarter, claiming the figure bore little relation to the state of the sector.

Leaders of the Construction Products Association wrote a stinging attack of the ONS this week in a letter sent to chancellor George Osborne.

The letter signed by CPA chief executive Michael Ankers said: “Few in the industry any longer have any confidence in the ONS statistics and this has a serious impact [on how] companies make investment and other policy decisions.”

The weak construction figure was one of the main drags on the overall GDP figure, which showed the economy expanded by 0.5% in the first quarter.

The ONS construction output figures are clearly nonsense and this data has had a profound effect on UK IR policy and also last year's election result. This combined with the "maintenance" effect on industrial production from mining and quarrying had a huge effect on GDP for Q4 & Q1. The construction data seems to delay 6-8 weeks.

Had the Q2 2010 construction figure been part of the 2010 Q1 GDP we would have got a near 1% q/q GDP figure just before the general election instead of the 0.2% figure released. This could have had a significant impact on the result.

Had a more positive construction figures / IP figures been part of Q4 & Q1 it is likely IR would already have risen. The pressure on the BOE would have been unbearable.

It is quite possible that the "maintenance" on oil rigs, gas fields will now have finished, and construction will bounce back strongly leading to an artificially stronger Q2. Of course the BOE always planned to raise in Q3, coincidence?

Edited by mattyfc

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  • 312 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?

      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
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      • up 5%

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