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National Accounts (Industry Benchmarks): Year ended March 2011
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  21 November 2013

About the national accounts

The national accounts annual releases provide information on economic activities, such as the production of goods and services and the costs involved in producing them, the incomes earned by various groups within the economy and what they do with them, and New Zealand's economic relationship with the rest of the world.

More definitions

Change in inventories: change in the value of inventories of raw materials, work-in-progress, and finished goods, over a given period. The change is measured in the appropriate prices in the market at the time additions and withdrawals are made. The correct valuation of the change in inventories requires continually updated data on the quantities of individual commodities held in stock, and appropriate prices. As this data is rarely available, the usual practice is to revalue stocks at the end of the period to closely approximate the value of the physical change in stocks in a given period.

Compensation of employees: payments of salaries and wages, whether in cash or in kind (such as fringe benefits), to employees. Includes contributions paid on employees' behalf to superannuation funds, private pension schemes, the Accident Compensation Corporation, and casualty and life insurance schemes.

Consumption of fixed capital: decline in the value of fixed assets used in production, as a result of physical deterioration and normal obsolescence.

Exports of goods and services: all goods and services produced by New Zealand residents and purchased by the rest of the world. Exports of merchandise are valued free-on-board.

Final consumption expenditure: private final consumption expenditure is the sum of household spending on consumer goods and services, and the spending on non-capital items by private non-profit organisations serving households. General government final consumption expenditure includes spending by both central and local government on non-capital goods and services.

Financial intermediation services indirectly measured: FISIM is one way that banks and similar institutions charge for services. FISIM is included within interest received and paid by banking service providers, and is measured indirectly because the value is not explicit within an interest transaction. This part of interest represents the value of the service associated with a loan or deposit.

Gross domestic product (GDP) expenditure measure: the final purchases of goods and services produced in the New Zealand domestic territory. Exports are added to domestic consumption, as they represent goods and services produced in New Zealand, while imports are subtracted. Imports represent goods and services produced by other economies.

GDP income measure: this approach directly measures the incomes received by the owners of the factors of production. These represent the returns to the labour and capital employed, such as wages and salaries, and profits.

GDP production measure: total market value of goods and services produced in New Zealand, minus the cost of goods and services used in the production process.

Gross fixed capital formation: Producers outlay on durable fixed assets, such as buildings, motor vehicles, plant and machinery, hydro-electric construction, roading, and improvements to land. 'Gross' indicates that consumption of fixed capital is not deducted from the value of the outlay.

Gross national expenditure: total final spending on goods and services by New Zealand residents within a given period (ie excluding goods and services used up during the production process).

Gross operating surplus: surplus generated by operating activities after the labour input is compensated.

Imports of goods and services: all goods and services produced by the rest of the world and purchased by New Zealand residents. Imports of merchandise are valued at value for duty.

Intermediate consumption: value of all goods and services consumed as inputs during the production process.

Imports of low value goods purchased directly by households: those valued at less than $1,000 and purchased directly by households.

Net taxes on production and imports: taxes on production and imports less subsidies.

NZSNA: New Zealand System of National Accounts is a comprehensive accounting framework based on an international standard, the 1993 System of National Accounts. The structure and content of the NZSNA transforms the countless economic transactions that take place each day into a framework, to analyse and compare important economic variables over time. One major objective of the NZSNA is to derive GDP.

Output: value of goods and services produced during a time period, regardless of whether they are produced for sale or own use.

Statistical discrepancy: in the NZSNA, the items making up GDP and expenditure on GDP are estimated independently, using diverse data sources. The combination of survey and other measurement and timing errors in the various components results in a difference between the estimates, known as the statistical discrepancy. The discrepancy is outside the GDP and expenditure on GDP calculations.

Subsidies: government grants to producers who regard the transfers as an addition to income from current production. These payments may be intended to influence levels of production, the prices at which outputs are sold, or the remuneration of the institutional units engaged in production.

Supply and use framework: framework within the national accounts used to confront and reconcile the annual production and expenditure estimates of GDP. The approach also provides the basis for checking the consistency of the measures of the supply and use of goods and services, which are estimated from different statistical sources.

Taxes on production and imports: are assessed on producers for the production, sale, purchase, and use of goods and services, and which add to their market prices. These include sales tax, local authority rates, import and excise duties, and fringe benefit tax. In the consolidated accounts of the nation, goods and services tax is included.

Value added: income formed in the production process. Value added equals output minus intermediate consumption. Value added is the income available to compensate the production factors involved.

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