International Trade, Real GDP, the Terms of Trade, and the Australian Economy 2011 to 2017
Alan Ross Hall
Economic Papers, 2018, vol. 37, issue 3, 220-229
Since their inception around 1960 the international System of National Accounts (SNA) constant price accounts (chained volumes) have mismeasured real GDP. The domestic production effects of changes in the terms of trade have been excluded and international trade values misreported. Most of the time the SNA mismeasurements have little real effect. But when there are large changes in the terms of trade they become statistically significant. Real GDP estimates may transform into mere counterfactuals. This is particularly so when the terms of trade are declining. After September 2011, did the mismeasurement of international trade hamper the economic management of the Australian economy?
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