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£780 + VAT
One of the most important economic statistics published by the ONS has been the inflation rate: first measured by RPI, more recently by CPI and currently also by CPIH. This two-day course will start by briefly exploring the economic and statistical theory behind the construction of these price indices. The main part of the course will look at the price data used to construct the indices, how it is combined in different indices and to explain the differences between the different inflation measures. There are many issues being debated at the moment, in particular to what extent the current measures of prices are capturing quality changes in some sectors (from smart phones to itunes) and to what extent we can use Big Data to improve our measures of inflation. Price indices play a major role in national statistics as price-deflators, turning nominal magnitudes into real ones. We need to measure inflation accurately if we are to measure real economic growth and productivity correctly.