Carney says ONS has a lot of work to do in order to bring data quality up to international standards

In a week that's seen the Office for National Statistics (ONS) pressed to reconsider how it releases data - its systems are too slow to release information in a timely fashion - Bank of England governor Mark Carney has said that the ONS has a lot of work to do.

Speaking before the Treasury Select Committee, the new governor said that he was "much more comfortable with the data in Canada", and that "we all have room to improve" with the ONS being no exception.

Highlighting two specific areas in which the ONS effort is poor, Carney pointed to a recent change in the deflator and flow of funds data.

That deflator change has made the picture of UK investment look much more volatile. Carney says it "doesn't feel entirely right" as investment appears to be falling while the economy is strengthening. As such, the Bank is "not putting the weight we would like to put on it".

Flow of funds data - which captures the movement of debt by sector, by household, and across the whole economy - is also patchy. Carney noted that the ONS does have a workplan to improve this, but that it's not currently at international standards, and certainly not at "the level we need".

Treasury Select Committee chairman Andrew Tyrie said that he saw the ONS as incompetent, with deputy governor for monetary policy Charlie Bean saying nothing to contradict his sentiments.

Most developed economies have a statistics agency that can release data in a timely fashion, and to all participants - the ONS however fails to do this. Yesterday the UK Statistics Authority recommended that data be released in chunks, as at present there is unequal access to official data.