Since Quarter 1 (Jan to Mar) 2020, estimates of household final consumption expenditure (HHFCE), along with other components of gross domestic product (GDP), have been subject to more uncertainty than usual as a result of the challenges we faced in collecting the data under government-imposed public health restrictions. In the case of HHFCE, these challenges have been compounded by the suspension of data collection for the International Passenger Survey (IPS) between 16 March and mid-January 2021 and the temporary suspension of the Living Costs and Food Survey (LCF) between 16 March 2020 and 14 April 2020.
The quarterly consumer trends data are typically published around 90 days after the end of the calendar quarter.
This release contains data that are consistent with the UK National Accounts, the Blue Book: 2021, which will be released on 29 October 2021. As such, data for all periods within this release are subject to revision in line with the National Accounts Revisions Policy.
The Blue Book is the UK’s annual compendium of national accounts data and incorporates a number of improvements to methods and sources into the UK National Accounts.
The reference year and last base year for all chained volume measure estimates is now 2019.
Further information on latest developments and changes implemented in Blue Book 2021 can be found in the article, Proposed changes to be implemented in Blue Book and Pink Book 2021.
HHFCE includes spending on goods and services except for: buying or extending a house, investment in valuables (for example, paintings and antiques), or purchasing second-hand goods. Explanations for these exceptions and the related concepts are available in the Consumer trends QMI.