|ONS Labour Market Release - December 2011||14 December 2011||Watch this short video from the ONS covering the labour market estimates for July to September 2011.
This shows the quarterly changes in employment, unemployment and inactivity
as well as the monthly change in the claimant count. It then focuses on
changes in public and private sector employment and how much public
sector employment has fallen since its peak in 2009. Finally it shows
average earnings growth comparing the whole economy and the public and
private sectors back to 2001.
For all ONS podcasts follow the link below.
|House Price Index - October 2011||13 December 2011|| ||From the DCLG website - Click on the link to access to the full article and related resources.
The latest UK house price index statistics produced by the Department for Communities and Local Government were released on Tuesday 13 December 2011.
The latest statistics release includes data based on mortgage completions during the month of October 2011.
The key points from the release are:
> In October UK house prices decreased by 0.4 per cent over the year and increased by 0.6 per cent over the month (seasonally adjusted). > The average mix-adjusted UK house price was £205,974 (not seasonally adjusted). > Average house prices increased by 0.6 per cent over the quarter to October, compared to a decrease of 0.6 per cent over the quarter to July (seasonally adjusted). > Average prices decreased during the year in all UK countries; England (-0.2 per cent), Wales (-0.5 per cent), Scotland (-1.5 per cent) and Northern Ireland (-12.1 per cent). > Prices paid by first time buyers were 0.4 per cent higher on average than a year earlier whilst prices paid by former owner occupiers decreased by 0.7 per cent. > Prices for new properties were 12.1 per cent higher on average than a year earlier whilst prices for pre-owned dwellings decreased by 1.2 per cent.
Tables and historic data can be downloaded via the link below.
|New LEP Summaries - Skills and Learning Module||13 December 2011|| ||The Skills and Learning Module (SLIM) has recently made available via its website Local Enterprise
Partnerships (LEP) summaries for the South West. This webpage also contains local Employment and Skills Boards (ESBs) information for the South West.
To access the series of
individually tailored LEP and ESB reports click on the link below.
|Housing Market Bulletin||09 December 2011|| ||The Monthly HCA Housing Market Bulletin provides the latest information on the housing market, the economy and the housebuilding industry. The information is drawn from several different sources. It includes:
> House price changes from the top house price indices including Nationwide, Halifax, the Land Registry and Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) > Housing market forecasts > Housing starts and completions as reported by the Department for Communities and Local Government and updates on key house builders > Mortgage trends and overall economy information
|Employment or Growth: Theory, Evidence and Policy Choices||06 December 2011||Call for Papers
The South West England and Wales Branches of the Regional Studies Association are pleased to announce their joint conference. This new initiative is designed to facilitate and stimulate dialogue between policy makers and academics in an attempt to identify ways to enhance and improve understanding of the workings of our economies and to make the regions better places to live. The Branches are interdisciplinary and welcome contributions from geographers, planners and economists from government, academics, and independent bodies as well as other interested parties.
The RSA invites submissions of abstracts. Although some conference themes are listed below, quality papers in all policy related areas that are relevant to our economies (very broadly defined) are welcome.
· Affordable housing
· Growth and agglomeration
· Impacts of creative industries
· Energy and low carbon futures
· Access to markets and services
· Innovation and competitiveness
· Spatial productivity disparities
· Low wages and high prices
· Sustainable communities
· Education geographies
Abstracts of approximately 250 words should be submitted by e-mail to the Chair of the South West Branch at the address below as soon as possible and by March 12 2012 at the very latest. Authors will be notified of the committee’s decision at the end March 2012.
For any further information regarding the conference, please contact the SW Branch Chair: Professor Don Webber, Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance, Bristol Business School, University of the West of England, Bristol, BS16 1QY. E-mail: Don.Webber@uwe.ac.uk. Tel: 0117 32 83416.
|ONS Report on Individual Wellbeing - Opinions Survey||01 December 2011||Around three quarters of adults in Great Britain rated their own life
satisfaction, with a score of 7 or more out of 10, according to a
research report published by the Office for National Statistics today.
Similar proportions also rated the things that they do in life as
worthwhile and their happiness over the previous day at 7 or more out of
In terms of how anxious people felt, over half those asked rated
their levels at below 4 out of 10 with a quarter reporting zero, i.e.
‘not at all’ anxious during the previous day.
This report brings together initial experimental results looking at
individuals’ assessment of their own well-being. Four key questions to
help assess people’s own individual well-being were placed on ONS
household surveys from April 2011 as part of the development to
supplement traditional measures of economic progress to better
understand and monitor the nation’s well-being.
The estimates published today are based on around 4,200 adults (aged
16 and over) who answered these questions in the ONS Opinions Survey,
from across Great Britain between April and August 2011. Results show
• When asked, ‘Overall, how satisfied are you with your life
nowadays?’ the majority (76 per cent) of people were estimated to have a
rating of 7 out 10 or more. However, a minority (8 per cent) were
estimated to be below 5 out of 10. The mean score for this question was
7.4 out of 10.
• When asked, ‘Overall, to what extent do you think the things you do in
your life are worthwhile?’ a slightly larger proportion (78 per cent)
of people rated this at 7 or more out of 10. A lower proportion of
adults gave lower ratings to this question, with 6 per cent giving a
rating below 5 out of 10. The mean score for the ‘worthwhile’ question
was higher than the ‘life satisfaction’ question at 7.6 out of 10.
• When asked, ‘Overall, how happy did you feel yesterday?’ again the
majority (73 per cent) of adults responded with 7 or more out of 10.
However, the spread of ratings was wider than for the ‘life
satisfaction’ and ‘worthwhile’ questions. A higher proportion of people
had higher ratings (36 per cent giving 9 or 10 out of 10) to the ‘happy
yesterday’ question as well as lower scores (12 per cent below 5 out of
10). The mean score for the ‘happiness yesterday’ question was 7.4 out
• When asked, ‘Overall, how anxious did you feel yesterday?’ over half
(57 per cent) had ratings of less than 4 out of 10, a sizeable
proportion (27 per cent) of people had ratings above 5 out of 10 (that
is, closer to 10, feeling ‘completely anxious’ than 0, ‘not at all
anxious’). The mean score for this question was 3.4 out of 10.
The four questions reported above were also seen to be linked with other
areas which were identified as important for measuring national
well-being as part of the national debate. Having a partner and
reporting to be in good health were positively associated with ‘life
satisfaction’, ‘worthwhile’ and ‘happiness yesterday’. People who were
unemployed reported lower levels on average compared with those who were
Additional questions were also asked on the Opinions Survey over the
period including satisfaction with aspects of life. Satisfaction with
‘financial situation’ (6.2 out of 10) had the lowest mean score,
followed by ‘work situation’ (6.7 out of 10) and also ‘with time to do
the things you like doing’ (6.8 out of 10). When asked specifically
about satisfaction with the balance between ‘time spent on paid work and
on other aspects of life’, even lower scores were given, with an
average of 6.4 out of 10. However, people were most satisfied on average
with their ‘personal relationships’ and ‘mental well-being’ which had
the highest mean scores (both at 8.3 out of 10).
ONS will publish further experimental estimates from the Integrated
Household Survey, which will ask the four overall monitoring questions
of around 200,000 adults over the year and will allow for analysis below
the national level such as regional variations and for more detailed
sub-groups of the population.
The full research report can be found at http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/wellbeing/measuring-subjective-wellbeing-in-the-uk/investigation-of-subjective-well-being-data-from-the-ons-opinions-survey/initial-investigation-into-subjective-well-being-from-the-opinions-survey.html.
Experimental statistics are those which are in the testing phase,
are not yet fully developed and have not been submitted for assessment...
|Prospects for Private Sector Jobs Growth Reports||03 November 2011|| ||The Coalition Government wants to increase private sector jobs
growth, rebalance the economy and decentralise power to local communities. But
faced with much reduced public spending, together with significant changes to
the infrastructure that previously supported economic development and business
growth, how feasible is this aim? What are the prospects for private sector
On Wednesday 2 November at the Albemarle Centre in Taunton the South West
Observatory launched a major piece of analysis recently compiled by the SWO Economy and Skills and Learning Modules. Key
issues identified from the research were presented alongside case study
examples from the business community and South West LEPs.
For reports, presentations and to view media coverage of the event see Prospects for Private Sector Jobs Growth.
|SWO Responds to National Planning Policy Framework Consultation||17 October 2011|| ||You can now read the consolidated SWO network response on the government's draft National Planning Policy framework Consultation (NPPF), submitted on Monday 17 October.
From the response summary:
> SWO welcomes the aims of the draft NPPF to provide a short and clear statement of Government policy, while recognising the complexity of applying the principles of sustainable development in practice.
> Concerns have however been raised around the clarity and consistency of some of the terminology used which we feel would benefit from revision. Clear guidance, particularly regarding the intention to devolve power for planning to local communities, will be key to the success of the framework. We would like to offer a number of points for your consideration. These include issues around: the presumtion in favour of sustainable development; the implications for local plans and core strategies; localism and community involvement in planning; the evidence base and monitoring.
Download our consultation response here.
|SW labour market - October 2011 release||12 October 2011|| ||Details of the latest ONS labour market data release.
|Experimental sub-regional productivity data||11 October 2011|| ||Experimental data released by the ONS presents a different perspective on sub-regional economic performance in the South West.