Upcoming official and experimental statistics publications - March 2021

Scottish Statutory Debt Solutions (Experimental Statistics) – Monthly Editions

The following experimental statistics releases will be published on the Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB) website at 09:30 on the following dates:

  • March 2021 edition – publication date is 14 April 2021
  • April 2021 edition – publication date is 12 May 2021
  • May 2021 edition – publication date is 09 June 2021

The reason for extending this monthly publication series from April 2021 to June 2021 is to ensure we continue to produce vital statistics on the impact of emergency measures brought in by both the Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 and the Coronavirus (Scotland) (No.2) Act 2020 during the pre-election period. 

Please note the Bankruptcy (Miscellaneous Amendments) (Scotland) Regulations 2021 will come into force on 29 March 2021 and make permanent some emergency measures  that were introduced through the Coronavirus (Scotland) (No.2) Act 2020.  Amongst the measures included are a reduction in the application fee for self-nominated bankruptcy and removal of all fees for those in receipt of certain benefits.  The Regulation 2021 also provides for an increase in the debt threshold for those applying for bankruptcy through the streamlined Minimal Asset Process.

We do welcome any feedback on any aspect of these statistics and invite you to complete our online survey:

Scottish Statutory Debt Solutions Statistics Publication User Survey.

or get in touch with us directly: aib_statistics@gov.scot.

Scottish Statutory Debt Solutions Statistics – Quarterly Editions

Please note that, prior to 27 January 2021, this publication name was titled “Scottish Insolvency Statistics”.

The following quarterly, official statistics releases will be published on the AiB website at 09:30 on the following dates:

  • January to March 2021 edition – publication date is 28 April 2021
  • April to June 2021 edition – publication date is 28 July 2021
  • July to September 2021 edition – publication date is 27 October 2021
  • October to December 2021 edition – publication date is 26 January 2022
  • January to March 2022 edition – publication date is 27 April 2022
  • April to June 2022 edition – publication date is 27 July 2022.

The Bankruptcy (Miscellaneous Amendments) (Scotland) Regulations 2021 are mentioned in the previous section.  As at March 2021, the monthly publication series included statistics on bankruptcy application fees.  We will seek to include these statistics in the quarterly publication series with effect from the January to March 2021 edition.

We still do welcome any feedback on any aspect of these statistics and invite you to complete our online survey:

Scottish Statutory Debt Solutions Statistics Publication User Survey.

or get in touch with us directly: aib_statistics@gov.scot.

Scottish Statutory Debt Solutions Statistics (Experimental Statistics) – Annual Editions

AiB is currently working to create the new annual publication series.  The first annual edition, titled “Scottish Statutory Debt Solutions Statistics: 2020-21” will be published on the AiB website at 09:30 on 28 July 2021.

Note this edition will be published on the same date as the quarterly April to June 2021 edition. 

The annual publication series is broadly similar to the existing quarterly publication series, but the former would include more detailed statistics, for example:

  • Number of statutory debt solutions by local authority areas
  • Length and rate of survival of protected trust deeds and approved debt payment programmes under the Debt Arrangement Scheme
  • Average debt level included in each statutory debt solution
  • Number of bankruptcies and protected trust deeds concluded in which dividend was payable to creditors or not
  • Average dividend paid to creditors.

These statistics will be initially classed as “experimental”, and we are planning to undertake a work programme to continuously evaluate and improving the existing output.  More specifically, the work programme for the financial year 2021-20 will focus on three main areas: User needs; Data completeness; Quality assurance processes.

This is the first time AiB has produced annual official statistics on statutory debt solutions where the “experimental statistics” label has been used with the aim for compliance with the Code of Practice for Statistics (statisticsauthority.gov.uk).  Experimental statistics is defined in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics as “statistics undergoing evaluation and published to involve users and stakeholders in their development”.  The Code promotes and supports the release of experimental statistics to involve users in their development at an early stage and achieve continuous improvement in statistical processes.  Therefore, it is important to note the statistics may not be fully compliant in all areas due to their nature as “data being developed”.

Scottish Diligence Statistics – Annual Editions

The next annual official statistics for Scottish Diligence Statistics 2020-21 will published on the AiB website at 09:30 on 08 September 2021.

In the past, these statistics have been classed as “experimental”.  The work programme to evaluate and improving the existing output had focused on the following main areas:

User needs

Based on recent online user feedback survey, the feedback is generally positive.  A total of six responses were received so far and showed that:

  • there is a great deal of interested in all the topics we cover – around 2/3 is interested in each topic
  • stats are mostly used for business intelligence, and personal knowledge
  • all respondents answered yes to the questions about understanding the tables, charts, language used and background information on diligence
  • 50% used stats more than three times in the last 12 months.

Quality assurance

In November 2018, a correction was made to the diligence statistics with an unscheduled update to correct an error in the historic data. The cause of this error was an incorrect data script used by a data supplier to extract their data from their systems before submitting to AiB. 

In 2020, we have incorporated much-improved quality assurance processes that would allow us to scrutinise each data return and this would alert us to any potential outliers.  Furthermore, we have been engaged with our data suppliers on a quarterly basis to make sure they understand our data needs and that their data returns are accurate.

Data completeness

Very recently, there is a growing interest in the similar output by LA areas.  We will investigate this possibility of collecting more data with our data suppliers without creating too much burden on their workload

Timeliness

Historically, the Scottish Diligence Statistics for any financial year have been published every December following the end of the financial year being reported.  This means there is an approximate nine month time lag between the end of the financial year and the publication of the diligence statistics.

Therefore, in order to ensure the diligence statistics will be released on a more timely basis that meet the needs of users as far as practicable, AiB will release the next set of diligence statistics on 08 September 2021.  This reduces the time lag from nine months to six months.

As the work programme has concluded and the production of the statistics is continuing, the “experimental statistics” label will be removed from the next set of diligence statistics, and therefore the statistics will be published as “official statistics”.  However, as users should be at the centre of our statistical production, we want to ensure that their needs remain understood, their views sought and acted on, and their use of statistics supported.

We still do welcome any feedback on any aspect of these diligence statistics and invite you to complete our online survey:

Scottish Diligence Statistics publication user survey.

or get in touch with us directly: aib_statistics@gov.scot.