Is the UK Prosperity Index a Better Statistic?

Tony Dent and Phyllis Macfarlane provide a critique of the UK Prosperity index as published by the Legatum institute in May of this year.   Summary:   The UK prosperity Index was published earlier this year, based upon developments from the original methodology created by the Legatum Institute in 2007. Following guidelines established by the […]

Mental Well-being

The recent blog “Are we facing a mental health pandemic?” by Tim Vizard and Theo Joloza which can be found here, is very important in emphasising the value of the ONS’s survey research program as a source for more insightful information than is available from purely administrative data. The blog introduces two new data sources […]

Well-being – Comparing Economic Variables with Survey Data

Prepared by Aiysha Mirza, CMR Group   Introduction As part of a project to compare measures of personal well-being and economic data, we are looking to test the validity/relevance of the current topics of questioning and how extensive the current measures are. We analyse this using information on the changes and trends of the main […]

Reflections on UK official Statistics

Professor Paul Allin of the Statistics Users Forum has opened an important debate in respect of the performance of the Government Statistics service with his reflections, as recently published on the Statistics Users Network and can be downloaded here. UKPLC believes that a principal problem with the work done during the pandemic has been the increasing […]

Phyllis Macfarlane comments on RPI methodology

I first became interested in Inflation measurement some years ago when GFK bid (unsuccessfully!) for the data collection work that inputs into the UK RPI. At that time the prices for each of the products and services in the basket of goods were collected by a team of market research Interviewers and the request for […]

RPI versus CPIH – what’s your opinion?

The Campaign for Better Business Statistics responses to the Joint UKSA / Treasury consultation on RPI methodology.   The Campaign for Better Business Statistics grew out of dissatisfaction with various aspects of UK business statistics, as provided by the ONS, and the belief that they were failing to capture many of the details of the […]

Iain MacKay comments on Tony Dent’s review of the ESCoE report

This comprehensive review of the ESCoE report exposes some reasons why open government is necessary to help ensure that public resources are neither wasted nor misdirected. The coalition government that came into office in 2010 showed a determination to provide Open Data in government, manifest in its Open Data command paper. Specifically, they said: “We’re:   […]

How successful is ESCoE?

A discussion paper on the ESCoE Report published 12th February 20201 By Tony Dent, Chairman CMR Group and the Campaign for Better Business Statistics2   Summary This document provides an opportunity for discussion based upon my personal review of the recent Economic Statistics Centre of Excellence (ESCoE) report. It also includes a summary of the […]

Business Research Report provided by Purple

Purple Market Research has recently published a summary of useful information concerning the impact of Covid-19 on UK Business. Unfortunately their good news is not as good as one would wish because they have referred to information published by the Office of National Statistics from their recent Business Impact of Covid Survey (BICS). In particular […]

The chancellor announces help for UK business – but is it enough?

Commentary on the scenario as published by the Office of Budgetary Responsibility (OBR)   Introduction This document provides a commentary on the scenario[1] recently published by the OBR, being their assessment of the likely cost to the Treasury of the effects of the Covid-19 outbreak and the measures taken by the government to control it. The opinions […]

The Effects of Covid-19 on UK Business

Summary of the main findings to date UKPLC have been conducting telephone and online research to gain information on the effects of the coronavirus on UK business and, although we cannot claim to have a statistically reliable dataset, the situation seems to be fairly drastic and, potentially, disastrous for the economy as we know it. […]

Some considerations for monitoring the effects of Covid-19 on UK business

By an economist We asked a distinguished economist for his ideas for our on-going research into the impact of Covid-19 on the UK business community. Here are his thoughts: One possible objective of current research is to monitor blow-by-blow how much (revenue-earning) activity has slowed as we go through this crisis. I’m actually not convinced […]

Covid-19 – and the good news is?

The coming boomer apocalypse   Introduction In recent days there have been numerous announcements and statistics published concerning Covid-19 for the UK and overseas. For my part, I had originally crunched the figures for the UK as shown below on the 7th March. I had done that as a personal interest and I emphasise that […]

The changing world of work –does IR35 help or hinder?

The majority of the UK workforce is made up of employees, people who work for a public or private organisation and who pay their income tax at source through the pay as you earn mechanism.  PAYE (as it is universally known) was first established as long ago as 1944, primarily to improve the flow of […]

The World of Work – Taylor Report (UK 2017) – What is the State of Play?

In July 2017, whilst political and media attention was squarely concentrated on Brexit, an important ground breaking review of the world of work was published. The report (entitled “Good Work”) was originally commissioned by Prime Minister Theresa May, who had appointed a four person panel to seek solutions to the challenges of poor quality work, […]

Living with Uncertainty

A reflection on some of the issues raised by Brexit day. One of the many data issues raised in recent years has been the problem of uncertainty when seeking to forecast our economic future. So, as part of UKPLC’s review of the first twenty years of this ‘new’ century we have re-examined “Macroeconomic uncertainty: what […]

The “Red Wall” has answered the question posed by the Chief Economist of the Bank of England

Within days of the momentous Brexit Referendum, the Chief Economist of the Bank of England in a speech in Port Talbot Wales made some telling points about the then current economic assumptions and the belief that successful business statistics, translate to successful real world outcomes. Andrew Haldane, in remarks attributed to him and not the […]

An investigation of Productivity by Size of Enterprise from 2009 to 2018

There has been a consistent concern about the lack of growth in productivity within the UK economy following from the worldwide financial crash of 2008/2009. We examined the ratio of turnover to employment as a surrogate for a more precise estimate of productivity. Please click HERE for the results of our investigation. So you never […]

Tough conditions for small businesses?

More than 15 years ago the Bank of England commissioned a series of reports on finance for small firms[1]. The combined reports, part of a bigger ten year program of research, came to some unsurprising conclusions. They are as relevant today to the tech start up, Deliveroo rider or AirBnB house owner as they were […]


Following CMR’s sponsorship of the successful meeting on the Gig economy, held at the National Liberal Club on the evening of the 28th October, we have now published a short report on part of the test work we have been undertaking. The survey was conducted by telephone and covered various aspects of peoples interactions with […]