The National Accounts basically consist of a closed system of accounts in which key macro-economic variables are shown as transactions or balances (e.g. gross domestic product, gross national income, disposable household income, government’s net lending/borrowing, private consumption, investments), based on the concept of an economic cycle.
The System of National Accounts (SNA 2008) standardises this concept at the international level. A variant tailored specifically to European circumstances is the European System of Integrated Economic Accounts (ESVG 2010 or ESA 2010). While the SNA is in essence a recommendation, the ESA is legally binding (EU Regulation).
The ESA 2010 provides for the representation of results according to economic branches on the one hand and institutional sectors on the other. Sector accounts describe the various phases of the economic cycle for corporations, the general government, private households and abroad. Production, income generation, income distribution, income redistribution, consumption and changes in assets are each represented for these sectors. The data is also shown according to different reference periods (year, quarters).
Within the framework of Regional Accounts, National Accounts data compiled for the economic area as a whole is also calculated for the Länder (federal provinces) and for 35 NUTS 3 regions.
In Input-Output Statistics, Supply and Use Tables (detailed description of the economy in matrices organised according to economic branches and groups of goods) and symmetrical Input-Output Tables (normally represented in a goods x goods matrix) are drawn up as the main instrument of coordination and analysis.
Transactions which have a goods dimension (goods and services) are calculated at current and constant prices to measure their change in volume (real growth) by eliminating price changes.
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