Benchmark revision in national accounts data to be published

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The National Statistics Office, NSO, will be carrying out a benchmark revision in national accounts data which will be published on the 28th of August and will, therefore, coincide with the publication of the Gross Domestic Product, GDP, for the second quarter of 2020.

Benchmark revisions are revisions of data sources or methods used to estimate economic indicators that take place recurrently every five to 10 years.

NSO explained, in a statement, that the last benchmark revision was carried out in October 2014 which saw the introduction of the European System of Accounts (ESA) 2010. The next benchmark revision will be published in August 2020 for the reference period 1995 to 2020 Q2, as required by the ESA 2010 Transmission Programme.

There are around five other European Union member states which are planning a benchmark revision in 2020.

NSO said that the main purpose of the 2020 benchmark revision is to refine national accounts data by including new data sources and estimation methods.

As a result of these revisions, the annual GDP at current prices will increase, on average, by around 1.4% between 1995 and 2019. Revisions in nominal GDP will approximately range between 0.1% in 2002 to 3.8% in 2013.

With regard to growth rates, NSO explained that GDP growth at will be revised by around 0.0 percentage points, that is upward revisions are expected to broadly offset downward revisions, on average, between 1995 and 2019, while revisions to GDP growth in volume terms will also approximately average 0.0 percentage points between 2000 and 2015.

Quarterly data for the most recent years, with the entire time series available online from the year 2000 onwards, a more detailed explanation of the methodological, conceptual and data source changes will also be made available.