National Accounts at a Glance 2009

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National Accounts data is more than just GDP.  This book, to be published annually, and its related database present national accounts in a way that reflects the richness inherent in the data and the value that represents for analysts and policymakers.  It responds to the Stiglitz Commission’s recommendation that policymakers look beyond GDP to get a fuller picture of the entire economy.


In particular it uses national accounts data to show important findings about households and governments, including important new series on gross adjusted household income and non-financial fixed assets of households. It presents each of the series on a two-page spread, with the page on the left providing information on the meaning, usage, and comparability of the data and the page on the right presenting data from 1995 onwards for the OECD countries as well as graphics highlighting differences among countries.

This book includes OECD’s unique StatLink service, which enables readers to download Excel®  versions of tables and graphs. Look for the StatLink at the foot of each table and graph.




The purpose of saving is to increase future resources available for consumption and to protect against unexpected changes in income. Saving in its simplest terms is very similar to the concept of saving commonly used by the man on the street. It reflects the amount of disposable income that remains after final consumption expenditures, and that is invested – be that in financial assets, such as bank deposits or shares, or non-financial assets, such as real estate. Its importance is therefore paramount in many areas such as: analyses of the sustainability of consumption patterns; or the scope of governments to stimulate demand or raise taxes. Government saving is also an important indicator in a budgetary context. The “Golden rule”, for example, that government saving should be zero over the course of an economic cycle is often set as a fiscal objective.


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