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New government house price index 'early in 2016'

New government house price index 'early in 2016'

It now appears likely that there will be a new government house price index launched in the first half of next year.

Last year the Department of Communities and Local Government and the Office for National Statistics announced that they were moving towards having just one official house price index; at different points over the past five years there have been as many as three produced by different arms of government.

A consultation was launched last October and now the ONS has given a progress report. 

It says each of the government departments involved in the collection of house price and related data have now agreed in principle that there will be just one index. This at least means, presumably, that departmental disputes have been settled.

Secondly, it has been agreed that the new index will be published via the Land Registry pages of the portal.

Thirdly, there has been slow movement on deciding what data will be used and how it will be measured - however, ONS says this will be resolved soon. 

Finally, although the ONS is not committing to specific dates it is anticipated that by the end of this year there will be testing of the new index, while open publication of the index will begin at some time in the first half of 2016.

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