ONS Data Collection Method May Be Distorting Reports, FT Says

May 9 (Bloomberg) -- The U.K.’s Office for National Statistics is examining the way it collects information about the construction industry to see whether a change in its methodology has skewed reported levels of activity, the Financial Times reported, without attribution.

Gross domestic product was likely to have been stronger in the first quarter of 2011 and weaker at the end of 2010 than reported, the FT said.

Travis Perkins Plc, Kier Group Plc, Tarmac and McLaren Construction are among companies concerned about the data gathering, the newspaper reported.

The ONS has “no reason at present to believe the construction series is giving a distorted picture,” Joe Grice, ONS chief economist said, the FT reported.

To contact the reporter on this story: Blanche Gatt in London at bgatt@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Colin Keatinge at ckeatinge@bloomberg.net.