§ Mr. Deakins
asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is the average error when monthly balance of trade figures are compared with the final outturn; and if there has been any statistical improvement in the accuracy of monthly balance of trade figures in the past decade.
§ Mr. Channon
The information is given in the table. The revisions result from changes in definition as well as the incorporation of later information. There has been no statistical improvement in the accuracy of the monthly figures over the last decade.
Revisions of UK visible trade balance:
Monthly average* £ million 1975 72 1976 50 1977 80 1978 88 1979 97 1980 66 1981 114 1982 106 1983 151 1984 70 * Average revision, without regard to sign, in the monthly estimates of the UK visible trade balance, seasonally adjusted on a balance of payments basis, since first published.