Task Force on Temporal Disagreggation

European Statistical System (ESS) guidelines on temporal disaggregation, benchmarking and reconciliation — 2018 edition are now published!

In official statistics there is an increasing demand for indicators at a higher frequency than have traditionally been observed. Eurostat and the European Statistical System (ESS) developed these guidelines to help data producers derive high frequency data (e.g. quarterly or monthly) from low frequency data (e.g. annual) and to address related temporal and accounting constraints. These guidelines are aimed at those involved in the production and analysis of infra-annual European statistics (compiled by Eurostat) and corresponding country specific official statistics compiled by National Statistical Institutes (NSIs). They have been conceived both for experts and beginners. In order to rank the different methods, each issue is discussed following a structure with three parts: a description (free text presenting the problem), a list of options (various possibilities to deal with the specific issue) and a list of ranked alternatives (A,B,C). Namely:

(A) Best alternative: should always be the target for producers.

(B) Acceptable alternative: retained only if time or resource issues prevent alternative (A).

(C) Alternative to be avoided: not a recommended option.

Being in line with these guidelines will ensure higher quality results, e.g. avoiding false signals and misinterpretation of the dynamics of the data.


The Task Force (TF) on Temporal Disaggregation was mandated by the Working Group on Methodology (during the meeting held on the 5 April 2017) to produce ESS Guidelines on Temporal Disaggregation, Benchmarking and Reconciliation. Members comprise representatives from Methodology and National Accounts Units of the National Statistical Authorities.

The Guidelines were publised in December 2018.

Electronic format

Download Publication PDF (EN)
Release date: 12/12/2018