gross domestic product
The gross domestic product (in Switzerland also gross domestic product , official abbreviation : BIP ; English gross domestic product, GDP ) gives the total value of all goods , i.e. H. Goods and services that were manufactured as end products within the national borders of an economy during one year , after deduction of all intermediate consumption . In 2018, the gross domestic product of the Federal Republic of Germany was 3,388.2 billion euros - around 3.4 trillion euros and thus 29% of the GDP of the euro area or 25% of the GDP of the EU27 .
Thus all final goods, i.e. goods at the processing stage of the end use, are recorded as economic output. In the calculation, are goods that are not directly used further, but to camp be taken as changes in stocks considered.
In contrast to the gross national income , only domestic benefits are recorded when calculating GDP ; the so-called domestic principle is applied; the national borders are decisive. The gross national income, on the other hand, is based on the resident principle. The services provided by residents abroad are also taken into account; conversely, services that foreigners have provided in Germany are not taken into account. So here the domiciles of the people are decisive. If the depreciation is deducted from the GDP , the result is the net domestic product (NIP).
GDP is a measure of the economic performance of an economy over a period of time. The rate of change in real GDP serves as a measure of the economic growth of the national economies and is therefore the most important variable in the national accounts (see list of countries by gross domestic product ).
The gross domestic product can refer to states as well as to other administrative or geographical units. Some of the terms are then gross regional product , Gross Provincial Product , Gross World Product and others.
The first cornerstones of GDP can be found in the 17th century with the British economist William Petty . He tried to find connections between economic developments and the prosperity and satisfaction of the citizens through data collection and empirical research, so that the government could improve its policies accordingly with this help and increase tax revenues. Petty's considerations arose in response to a crisis that consisted of civil wars in England, many conflicts in Scotland and Ireland, and Britain's war with France. At the time, gathering information about the current state of the economy seemed particularly useful as a basis for policy action to improve the situation. Petty's first national accounts seemed trivial and not special at first, but his method, which he called political arithmetic , was completely new at the time.
Petty's ultimate goal was to show that changing the tax system could lead to higher national incomes. He discovered the economic strength of the working population and emphasized the possibility of gaining power through political measures towards more prosperity. In order to be able to take suitable measures, it is necessary to collect empirical data. Knowledge of the country's economic and social situation and international comparison would thus form the basis for political action.
However, Petty's writings remained unpublished until his death. In 200 years after his death, no further attempt was made to use his method to calculate national income.
In his 1776 work The Wealth of Nations , Adam Smith formulated a general theory of economic progress, but did not mention William Petty. His writing contained the idea of an annual product as the yield from the factors land and labor, based on the division of labor as the key to higher production. Smith saw the progress of the economy as a natural course and no need for government intervention, which is why he made no attempts to calculate wealth.
Thomas Robert Malthus, on the other hand, undertook methodological considerations for calculating national income in his The Principles of Political Economy , published in 1836, but did not carry them out either. Alfred Marshall specified with his idea of the national income in Principles of Economics the consideration of intangible goods and services, provided that they have a market price. He called economics the science of prosperity, which can be achieved by satisfying human needs with goods. From this follows the increase in the quantity of goods as a socio-political necessity, in particular to combat poverty after industrialization.
This topic was deepened in 1920 by Marshall's successor Arthur Cecil Pigou . He called the part of welfare measurable in money as a sub-area of general welfare 'economic welfare'. Pigou assumed that increasing economic welfare also had positive effects on the overall welfare of a country. An increase in national income therefore means an increase in overall welfare.
The idea of national income was thus present since Petty and was methodically refined. Until the 20th century, however, no one believed in the political importance of statistical data collection in the sense of Pettys.
Another major thought leader of today's GDP is economist Colin Clark . He was the first to undertake calculations of the national income according to Petty and created the basics and elements of GDP recording that are still relevant today. He also developed the concept of growth as measured by the rate of growth in national income. Clark, like Petty, saw national income as a politically relevant figure for international comparisons. Despite numerous publications, the British government saw no need for national income to be calculated for a long time.
It was not until the first half of the 20th century that the discussion about a more systematic collection of economic data to measure prosperity, especially in the USA and England, parallel to the growing research area of economics , gained importance. Since with the Second World War the need for continuous statistical recording of current data on the state of the economy arose, this can be described as the birth of the national accounts . The data recorded served mainly as a basis for calculating the funds available for war expenditure.
In 1940, John Maynard Keynes recommended, in How to pay for the, not only consumption and investment, but also government spending should be included in national income, which still corresponds to the current definition of GDP.
Keynes developed Clark's method for calculating the national income in cooperation with the members of the British Treasury Department James Meade and Richard Stone , which was finally able to prevail. A little later, Meade and Stone developed a system of accounts for the national accounts based on Clark's and, more precisely, Keynes's definition.
At the same time, a method was developed in the USA where the state itself recognized the usefulness of national income calculations early on. The American economist Simon Smith Kuznets , who was mainly concerned with the determinants of growth and received a Nobel Prize in 1971 for his research on economic growth and inequality, was commissioned at the time of the Great Depression in 1931 to calculate the national income for the years 1929–1931. In this context, it was the first time a government requested the data.
After doing the calculations, Kuznets advised the American Congress of the limited ability of this indicator to measure wealth.
He emphasized that the recording of national income depended on the social consensus on what is understood by economic activity and, in addition to its potential, saw the risk of overestimating the indicator.
From then on, the Department of Commerce made the calculations on a regular basis. Finally, in 1936, President Franklin D. Roosevelt also referred to increasing the national income in his election campaign. In 1934 the American economist Clark Warburton carried out further calculations and spoke for the first time of the gross national product , which finally replaced the concept of national income at the end of the war.
During the Second World War, the calculation of the gross national product was also used in the USA to assess the impact of armament plans and to identify key indicators for combating inflation . But even after the war, the determination of statistical data was of great importance. Since almost half of the gross national product consisted of government spending during the war, the task now was to create new jobs outside the military and the arms industry and to stimulate private investment and demand. This restructuring was definitely a challenge that would have been difficult to master without regular assessment of the current state of the economy.
In 1944 representatives of the USA, Canada and Great Britain finally met to find a common basis for calculating the gross national product and in 1947 they agreed on the account system according to Meade and Stone. Simon Kuznets always criticized the calculation and pointed out the risk of a wrong economic understanding being implemented. He also called for a different calculation in times of war and times of peace, since economic activity is based on different goals in both cases. However, no importance was attached to Kuznet's criticism.
Finally, the method of political arithmetic according to Petty was implemented almost ideally: A data system for determining economic activity as a basis for political recommendations for action.
The British economist Angus Maddison later even calculated GDP per capita for a period of up to 2000 years.
In an international comparison, Germany was later on when it came to collecting national income. In the 19th century, numerous national income statistics were created on the basis of income data from tax statistics, but these were only collected irregularly and were also carried out unofficially. German economists questioned the usefulness of the numbers.
In 1913 the first comprehensive national income estimate for the German Reich was presented, which was also based on analyzes of tax estimates. However, the national income estimate was not carried out on behalf of the state.
A strong political demand for statistical data did not develop until the end of the First World War . The demand can be explained by the need for this data and the information resulting from it.
The state of the economy in the post-war period was a vast unknown. There were no useful indicators of inflation, as well as trade data, unemployment figures and figures relating to production and income. Previous attempts to determine wages and salary levels failed due to resistance from industry and entrepreneurs. They feared that the results could provide arguments for the Social Democrats. This data should be determined in a complex process. This turned out to be difficult because big industry boycotted the process and, through its influence, could even postpone political decisions in the Reichstag. The unions, however, support the surveys on wages and salaries.
Many cities created their own index of living conditions shortly after the war. A national index was only calculated in 1920, the so-called Reich index. It has been drawn up regularly since then, but business associations have tried to sabotage it on a regular basis. It was not until the mid-twenties that the Reich Index gained in importance and could also cause a sensation politically, as the political parties tried to use the data obtained for their own purposes.
With the onset of inflation in 1922, all the figures determined so far lost their importance and only with the end of hyperinflation could meaningful statistics be collected again. Tracking incomes was still difficult as corporations tried to hide important information about incomes. Surveys could be made for individual branches of industry, however, and there was a huge gap between the negotiated wages and the actual wages.
The establishment of the Institute for Economic Research in 1925 represented a decisive milestone in the development of statistics and national income statistics in the Weimar Republic. The institute was supposed to combine work on the theory of business cycle observation and business cycles with empirical research. The institute was affiliated with the Reich Office and thus still part of the official statistics. Economics changed from an academic discipline that was unrelated to politics to an instrument relevant to political practice. For the first time, economic research should explicitly serve economic policy. From 1926 the calculation of the national income was reported by the institute. The data was used for business cycle analysis, but was not published as an official figure by the Reich Office and was therefore not yet a political control parameter. National income only represented how incomes have developed in recent years and was not suitable for forecasting or planning.
With the beginning of National Socialism and the takeover of government, the institute was separated from the Reich Office. With the beginning of the Second World War and rearmament, the need for relevant figures increased. The statistics on national income were rather insignificant in the politics of the National Socialists, and the data were not included in economic and military decision-making processes.
The first official calculation of the gross national product in Germany took place within the framework of the Marshall Plan . The specialty of this requirement was that the numbers had to be published as official digits. Finally, the gross national product and its calculation methods came to Germany through external pressure and were declared a sovereign task. The official statistics had to be rebuilt after the end of the war.
At the beginning of 1948, the statistical office of the United Economic Area was founded in Wiesbaden for the British-American bizone, which was to be responsible for calculating the gross national product. However, external expertise was required for this. The following problem arose when carrying out the calculations. After the division of Berlin, the required data and statistics were in the Soviet sector and were therefore no longer freely accessible. The data was ultimately stolen by an American control officer and the calculations of the gross national product made on this basis were published in 1949 in a journal published by the statistical office.
However, German politics showed no extraordinary interest in the published figures. Rather, the national accounts were associated with the planned economy and viewed with great skepticism by the then Economics Minister Ludwig Erhard . The reluctance disappeared when it was realized how versatile the construction of total accounts was and what benefits it had for the various economic sectors. When it became clear that the statistics could be used as a basis for tax estimates, the budget and financial planning, political skepticism subsided. With the onset of economic growth, the gross national product became the most powerful political figure in Germany and ultimately prevailed.
Data collection and calculation
Collection and use of data
The GDP in Germany is calculated by the Federal Statistical Office . It calculates the GDP of the previous year twice a year, in spring and autumn. In the autumn, not only the figures for the previous year, but also those for the previous years are examined and, as a rule, slightly revised. In addition, the Federal Statistical Office presents quarterly figures on GDP for the current year, which are only based on estimates.
Nominal and real GDP
The nominal GDP indicates the sum of the domestic added value or the added value of regions in current market prices . As a result, GDP is dependent on changes in the price index of the economy under consideration. Nominal GDP rises with inflation and the consequent rise in market prices. Conversely, nominal GDP falls in the event of deflation and, as a result, falling market prices. For example, an inflation rate of five percent with unchanged goods production leads to a nominal GDP increase of five percent.
In order to be able to view GDP independently of changes in prices, one uses real GDP , in which all goods and services are valued at the prices of a base year (GDP at constant prices). In Germany, the Federal Statistical Office has been using chain indices since 2005 .
If you know the price increase since the base year , real GDP can be calculated from nominal GDP using the following formula:
The GDP deflator is the quotient of nominal and real GDP for a year. It is known as the implicit price index of GDP and measures the price development of the end goods produced.
GDP and NIP
If the depreciation is deducted from the GDP , the result is the net domestic product . However, these depreciations only relate to the depreciation of the fixed assets due to wear and tear and aging - i.e. only the depreciation which is made for future replacement investments.
|+ Gross domestic product|
|= Net domestic product|
Types of calculation
The gross domestic product can be determined in three different ways. All calculation methods lead to the same result. This is illustrated below using the example of Germany in 2007 (GDP at that time was 2,423.8 billion euros.)
The methods used to collect the data and calculate GDP are revised at irregular intervals. For example, since the last revision of the national accounts on April 28, 2005, the indirect fees paid by banks from the lending and deposit business that had not been recorded until then have been taken into account. In order to ensure a historical comparison, the data for the past years are adjusted accordingly.
On August 20, 2009, the European Commission published a communication to the European Parliament entitled GDP and beyond - Measuring progress in a changing world . It recommends the development of new measurands.
The economic performance from the production side is shown here. The central variable is the gross value added . It is calculated from the sum of all productions minus preliminary work. The table shows the gross value added by sector for Germany in 2007.
|Production value||4,454.57 billion euros|
|- advance payments||- € 2,282.39 billion|
|= Gross value added||€ 2,172.18 billion|
|+ Taxes on goods minus Goods subsidies||€ 251.62 billion|
|= Gross domestic product||€ 2,423.80 billion|
In the usage calculation, the calculation is based on the demand side. The use for goods and services is determined. The following table shows the components of the expenditure calculation on the left; the values on the right correspond to their size in Germany's national GDP in 2007.
|Private consumer spending||€ 1,374.40 billion|
|+ State consumption expenditure||€ 436.10 billion|
|+ Gross investments||€ 442.50 billion|
|+ Exports||€ 1,133.00 billion|
|- imports||- € 962.20 billion|
|+||= External contribution||€ 170.80 billion||€ 170.80 billion|
|= Gross domestic product||€ 2,423.80 billion|
Here, GDP is measured based on incurred income. The distribution is based on the national income . This table shows the components of the distribution calculation on the left and the associated data from 2007 on the right.
|Compensation of employees||€ 1,181.0 billion|
|+ Corporate and property income||€ 643.2 billion|
|= National income||1,824.2 billion euros|
|+ Production and import taxes to the state less subsidies||€ 277.0 billion|
|+ Depreciation||€ 345.2 billion|
|= Gross national income||€ 2,446.4 billion|
|- Balance of primary incomes from the rest of the world||- € 22.6 billion|
|= Gross domestic product||€ 2,423.80 billion|
The Federal Statistical Office points out that in Germany no independent calculation of GDP is carried out on the distribution side because there is insufficient information about corporate profits.
GDP as an indicator
Gross World Product and Economic Power
The gross world product (BWP), also known as the world gross domestic product, was US $ 77,451 billion in 2014. The industrialized countries have a share of 58.9%, that is 45,627 billion US $. The developing countries generate 37.7%, that is 29.206 billion US $. Southeast Europe and the successor states of the Soviet Union account for 3.4%, or US $ 2,617 billion.
The countries with the highest GDP - United States , People's Republic of China , Japan , Germany and Great Britain - have a share of 50.8% alone. This is equivalent to US $ 39.3 trillion. The countries in the “Top Ten” with the highest GDP alone account for 65.1% of world GDP (US $ 36.4 trillion). The first 20 countries accounted for almost 80% of world GDP.
While in 2014 Europe, the United States and Canada accounted for 25.5% and 24.9% of world GDP, respectively, the whole of Africa, at US $ 2.43 trillion, only accounted for 3.1%. The shares of South America and Central America and the Caribbean are also low at 5.6% and 2.2%, respectively. In Asia, Japan and South Korea accounted for 7.8% of world GDP, while the rest of Asia together accounted for 20.6%. In the other countries of Asia, whose share of the world population in 2004 was over 53.6%, lived twenty times as many people as in Japan and South Korea.
|region||GDP in US $||% v. BWP|
|North America||19,322 billion||24.9%|
|Central America and the Caribbean||1.710 billion||2.2%|
|South America||4,368 billion||5.6%|
|middle East||3.518 billion||4.5%|
|Southeast Europe and CIS||2.617 billion||3.4%|
|Australia and Oceania||1.719 billion||2.2%|
|Gross World Product (BWP)||77,451 billion||100.0%|
The economic growth , measured as the change rate of the gross domestic product is commonly used by politicians as a criterion for success. All national product comparisons are comparisons of two combinations of goods, which are valued in money in accordance with certain rules , i.e. two sums of money , through which one can obtain some information if one knows their method of calculation. They give no insight into "benefit" or "satisfaction".
From GDP to Disposable Income
The GDP provides information about the development of production. The question of an economy's consumption options is also important. This requires information about disposable income. The problem of an appropriate measure of the standard of living is most aptly solved by net national income .
GDP per capita and wealth
The gross domestic product per capita or GDP per inhabitant enables a comparison of different economic areas of different sizes with one another and is seen as a measure of the material prosperity in a country or region. It is calculated as follows:
per capita in
Int .- $ ( PPP )
|economically developed states||49,299|
|economically developing states||11,811|
|People's Republic of China||82||16,660|
|Democratic Republic of Congo||190||790|
In 2017, 16 of the 20 countries with the world's lowest GDP per capita were in Africa. Africa is also the continent with the lowest GDP per capita - in 2017 it was only 3,900 int. US $ (PPP) per year. (However, life satisfaction cannot be inferred from a low GDP per capita , as is expressed in other indices such as the HPI .)
GDP alone and in itself does not permit any statements about prosperity , quality of life or equity for and between the people of an economy. The long-term state of the welfare state security systems ( statutory pension insurance , health insurance , long-term care insurance ) and other factors such as B. social peace, air quality, recreational areas and the state of natural resources are not included in GDP. Therefore, the following economic indices can be used as an alternative or in addition to the inclusion of these goals in economic policy:
- Fragile States Index
- Since 2005, the private think tank Fund for Peace, in cooperation with the journal Foreign Policy, has published the so-called Fragile States Index ( Failed States Index until 2014 ), in which states are examined for their risk of state collapse . Twelve different factors are combined to form the index.
- Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI)
- The Genuine Progress Indicator is a measure of the economic performance of an economy that is intended to depict the sustainability of growth. An economic activity with acceptance of serious environmental damage, the repair of which will cost future generations significantly more than the current population benefits from the activity, is recorded as positive in the GDP and negative in the GPI
- Social Progress Index
- The Social Progress Index measures the extent to which a state can meet the economic, social and ecological needs of its citizens. The index is made up of a number of indicators on health, education, ecology, sustainability, security and personal freedom, but ignores the gross domestic product.
- World Happiness Report
- The World Happiness Report is an annual report published by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network . The report includes life satisfaction rankings in different countries around the world and data analysis from different perspectives.
- Gini index
- The Gini index is a measure of how equal or unequal the distribution of income and wealth is in a country.
- Good Country Index (GCI)
- The Good Country Index measures how much a country invests in global prosperity and peacekeeping. It is an indirect indicator of a country's long-term development, as countries with a high GCI can also secure better trade relations .
- Happy Planet Index (HPI)
- The Happy Planet Index is a measure of the ecological efficiency of generating satisfaction, taking into account life satisfaction, life expectancy and the ecological footprint
- Human Development Index (HDI)
- The Human Development Index (English Human Development Index ) is out of the GNI per capita measured in purchasing power parity involving life expectancy formed and educational level.
- Human Sustainable Development Index (HSDI)
- An extension of the Human Development Index , the greenhouse gas considered emissions.
- Sustainable Economic Wealth Index (INWW)
- The index of sustainable economic welfare (English index of sustainable economic welfare , ISEW) is a precursor index of the GPI.
- Purchasing power parity courses
- The conversion of national gross domestic products on the basis of nominal exchange rates is misleading for some issues. Another measure, the purchasing power parity exchange rate (English purchasing power parity , PPP). The Big Mac Index is an exchange rate on the purchase price of a Big Mac of fast-food chain global McDonald's is based. This measure is more suitable as a comparison since Big Macs are not traded internationally. Big Mac prices contain information about prices for non-(internationally) tradable goods. Average prices (for non-tradable goods) in poor countries are typically lower than prices in developed economies. An official exchange rate is based primarily on the prices of (internationally) tradable goods and thus overestimates the price level in poor countries.
- W3 indicators
- The W3 indicators are an ensemble of indicators of prosperity and progress, the potentially more meaningful prosperity are to represent and progress indicators.
The informative value of GDP with regard to the economic performance of people in an economy is limited, as the following factors are not or only partially taken into account:
- Undeclared work or the entire shadow economy
- Subsistence farming
- Unpaid activities such as housework and family work , home care , child care , home improvement , volunteering or hobbies
Under certain conditions the results for individual states are skewed. Numerous international companies have their legal headquarters in Ireland in order to be able to use the “ Double Irish With a Dutch Sandwich ” model to tax their profits in other European countries at a lower rate. Irish GDP is inflated by taking into account this non-domestic economic output. In Luxembourg, 43.2% of all wage earners are cross-border commuters, so that the value of GDP per capita appears to be around twice as high in comparison.
In summary, it can be said that GDP only reflects (traded) output , not the prosperity of an economy. A comparison of countries and times can only be based on it to a limited extent.
The French from former President Nicolas Sarkozy convened Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress ( Stiglitz-Sen-Fitoussi Commission ), who belonged to five Nobel Prize winners should create an alternative calculation. In doing so, the Commission asked statisticians not only to look at economic growth, but to assess the current “well-being” of a country. GDP continues to play a role in this. However, the average household income, family work, leisure time, health and the state of the environment would also have to be included.
- List of countries by historical development of the gross domestic product
- List of countries by historical development of gross domestic product per capita
- List of German federal states according to gross domestic product
- List of German cities according to gross domestic product
- List of cities by gross domestic product
- List of countries by economic structure
- Gross National Happiness
- Organic national product
- Social indicators
- Sufficiency (ecology)
- Environmental and economic accounting , environmental balance
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