Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Thursday’s HMRC sales data pulled

Revenue withdraws house sale data

The government's official statistics on property sales in the UK have been withdrawn from publication because they appear to be wrong. The figures are published each month by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for sales worth more than £40,000. HMRC said that revisions to the previous months' figures, going back to March this year, had cast doubt on their accuracy. Figures for July were due to come out on Thursday, but have been postponed.

Posted by doomwatch @ 04:13 PM (2336 views)
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26 thoughts on “Thursday’s HMRC sales data pulled

  • last_days_of_disco says:

    No, they can’t be that bad can they.

    Is this denial, or have they hada a nasty shock and need some time to “smooth” things out.

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  • Wow! Can there REALLY be anyone left in this country who a) has faith in the housing market doing anything other than crashing b) has faith in the government doing anything other than c*cking up?

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  • Utter Boll*cks.

    Massively unlikely that this would be uncovered now. Even if there was a systemic problem, the data should still be produced up until the issue is resolved, and then rectified. Ridiculous.

    Sounds to me like they want to avoid giving political ammo to anyone to fire at Darling over this whole ‘stamp duty’ debacle. Did that fall into this period?

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  • HMRC probably lost the data!

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  • Is this a cover up having lost the data ?

    A record 37 million items of personal data went missing last year, new research reveals. Most of the data was lost by government officials (Source – David Harrison Daily Telegraph 07/01/2008)

    Seems rather strange as the info relating to house purchase transactions amounting to £40K or more is generally sent in by Solicitors/conveyancers on a formal and mandatory return.

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  • I’ve been expecting this to happen for at least the last four months. At the moment, things are getting very Orwellian. There was an ethnic cleansing in Georgia, narrowly avoiding becoming a massacre, thank to Putin, that was, absurdly reported as a Russian invasion (cleverly timed .. just.. for the 40th anniversary of…), the olympics are starting to look very like Munich 1930 whatever, and now …

    Don’t get me wrong – I love sports, Tchaikovsky and statistical distributions, but the combination of all three is perplexing.

    We live in strange times.

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  • Eternal Sceptic says:

    How awfully convenient for them.Could it be the truth hurt, or do they require an element of spin before release, like everything else?

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  • last_days_of_disco says:

    Maybe they think they lost the data because there are so few returns?

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  • it_is_going_with_a_bang says:

    “Our statisticians have come to the conclusion that something doesn’t look quite right,” explained an HMRC spokeswoman.

    Ah now you see if they were talking about their adding up over inflation I would entirely agree. Because I really have no idea how on earth they come up with their figures.
    But this sounds like people trying to find a new calculation that says what they want to hear.

    No doubt if the figures are worse nothing will be heard.

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  • mountain goat says:

    I suspect the conclusion will be that prices have risen this year not fallen. House prices always go up don’t they?

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  • Surely these kind of stats are the remit of the ONS not HMRC.

    Not that the ONS are any better.

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  • Perhaps the stats people are confused, this months adjusted figurs are down on last yeard and that can’t be right… after all house prices only ever go up?

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  • what is going on??
    Is it all the repossession sales messing up the figures [are they included?]

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    Bless them.

    The ONS had to revise the published figure for average private pensions recently – it turned out that they’d multiplied the weekly figure by 12 not by 52 in arriving at annual figures.

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  • There were never any problems with the statistics when house prices were rising …

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  • What you all say – frankly unber f**k*ng leavable.

    Simply defies comprehension.

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  • There might be a problem counting the votes at the next by-election – does S2r1’s information war theory carry more credibility by the day?

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  • “Figures for July were due to come out on Thursday, but have been postponed…”

    until someone somewhere buys a property.

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  • Well if the public had any doubts about this government’s total lack of integrity and massive incompetence, this should convince them. No doubt they’re getting some advice from the people who fiddle the inflation figures.

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  • Whostolemyendowment says:

    Maybe it hadn’t been vetted by the Thought Police before release?

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  • A lot of the government agency IT systems are now run by big rip off “consultancies”. Maybe they’ve outsourced it to Zimbabwe, as they’ve heard they are good with stats.

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  • I would have thought that all these stats were actually put together by ‘unbiassed’ civil servants, or what would be the point of publishing them? That being the case, what does it say about the separation of powers within the UK?

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  • Hmm…knowing an organisation who provides figures for government…many times they find out that the spreadsheets have been corrupted and the models and figures published have been rubbish for years. Often they just don’t fix the models they know are wrong as it is too embarrassing. However, it is a little convenient isn’t it?!

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  • 21st September is a Sunday

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  • Ladies and Gentlemen.

    Can’t understand the excitement about the falls in houseprices. This is bad, very bad news for all of us, with or without a house. We all know that they are at crazy, unsustainable levels, but we should be trying to find ways to stabilise these prices in future – we should be after a 3 to 4 % annual inflation rate in this asset class.

    Can anyone see how this can be done in our houseprice mad country? Should we not just blame the homeowners, the media or the banks, do we not all have a role in this – including ourselves? We’re just as mad as the rest of them – are we contributing to this instability?

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