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Index of Services Introduction

The monthly Index of Services  (IoS) was developed to provide a timely indicator of growth in the output of service industries, at constant prices for the United Kingdom (UK).  The IoS is a key component of monthly Gross Domestic Product by Output  (GDP(O)), representing 78% of UK GDP as of 2010.  The IoS shares the exact same industry coverage as the corresponding quarterly series within GDP(O).

Between December 2000 and February 2007, the IoS was published as an experimental series. The main reason for the experimental label was that a large scale development programme to improve the short-term measurement of the service sector was launched at the same time as the launch of the IoS.

In March 2007, the IoS was reclassified from experimental to national statistic status. This was in response to the significant methodological improvements made to the IoS as part of the IoS Development Programme. This decision was made following a robust evaluation programme conducted by the Office for National Statistics methodological experts in index numbers, prices & deflation, and sample design & estimation.  Further details can be found in the article The launch of the Index of Services as a National Statistic.

In 2010 the IoS was addressed by the UK Statistics Authority as part of its ongoing review process to ensure that official statistics comply with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics, it was agreed that the IoS would retain its National Statistics status providing a number of areas were addressed.  See full report for details of the requirements.

One of the key areas to be reviewed is the re-introduction of the IoS Development Programme to address requirement three of the UK Statistics Authority Assessment into Short Term Economic Output Indications.  This is taking the form of the GDP(O) Improvement Project which looks at GDP(O), IoS and IoP.  Further details can be found on the improvements page.

These pages aim to explore the details of the IoS estimate, looking at:

Please note that many of the pages are under review at the moment as part of the GDP Output Improvement Programme (226.7 Kb Pdf) .

Content from the Office for National Statistics.
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