The Statistical Office of the European Communities – Eurostat; the International Association for Official Statistics – IAOS; and the Irving Fisher Committee on Central Bank Statistics – IFC, are organising a conference on ‘Residential Property Price Indices’ at the Bank for International Settlements, Basel, Switzerland on November 11-12, 2009.
This international conference will bring together experts from national statistical institutes, central banks, academics and private sector. The objective is to discuss the uses of residential property price indices (RPPI), the practical and theoretical basis for compiling such data and how statistical organisations – both private data providers and official statistics – should address various methodological and compilation issues. Drawing on the networks of Eurostat, the IAOS and IFC, the conference aims at promoting a global dialogue amongst different stakeholders. The conference will contribute to a Eurostat-led project aimed at preparing an International Statistical Handbook on Residential Property Price Indices under the auspices of the Inter-Secretariat Working Group on Price Statistics.
The quality and availability of housing price indices differs from country to country. In some cases there may be an abundance of reliable data; in most others, hardly any indicators are available and those that are, often fail to meet user requirements. Sometimes the differing characteristics of available indices are not necessarily well known, let alone understood, which can seriously hamper international comparisons. From the perspective of price index compilers it may not necessarily be clear which data key users require. Moreover, there are no international guidelines for producing RPPIs.
By bringing together users, compilers, statisticians and policy makers, the conference will gather a wide range of experience in compiling and using residential property price indices and identify key issues that will merit attention as statistical standards are developed in this field.