Thursday, September 25, 2008
Tim Harford entertains and informs
UK.....house prices fell by 1.5 per cent in April, according to the Halifax index. Except: they didn’t. The Halifax’s own figures show that house prices rose in April, albeit by less than 0.2 per cent. The 1.5 per cent fall, widely reported, is the result of “seasonal adjustment”, an attempt to strip out predictable calendar patterns and report just the underlying trend. House prices usually surge in April, and this April the surge was disappointing enough to be reported as a fall.