# Chapter 24 Measuring Domestic Output and National Income QUESTIONS. 1. In what ways are national income statistics useful? LO1

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1 Chapter 24 Measuring Domestic Output and National Income QUESTIONS 1. In what ways are national income statistics useful? LO1 Answer: National income accounting does for the economy as a whole what private accounting does for businesses. Firms measure income and expenditures to assess their economic health. The national income accounting system measures the level of production in the economy at some particular time and helps explain that level. By comparing national accounts over a number of years, we can track the long-run course of the economy. Information supplied by national accounts provide a basis for designing and applying public policies to improve the performance of the economy. Without national accounts, economic policy would be guesswork. National income accounting allows us to assess the health of an economy and formulate policies to maintain and improve that health. 2. Why do national income accountants compare the market value of the total outputs in various years rather than actual physical volumes of production? What problem is posed by any comparison over time of the market values of various total outputs? How is this problem resolved? LO1 Answer: If it is impossible to summarize oranges and apples as one statistic, as the saying goes, it is surely even more impossible to add oranges and, say, computers. If the production of oranges increases by 100 percent and that of computers by 10 percent, it does not make any sense to add the 100 percent to the 10 percent, then divide by 2 to get the average and say total production has increased by 55 percent. Since oranges and computers have different values, the quantities of each commodity are multiplied by their values or prices. Adding together all the results of the price times quantity figures leads to the aggregate figure showing the total value of all the final goods and services produced in the economy. Thus, to return to oranges and computers, if the value of orange production increases by 100 percent from \$100 million to \$200 million, while that of computers increases 10 percent from \$2 billion to \$2.2 billion, we can see that total production has increased from \$2.1 billion (= \$100 million + \$2 billion) to \$2.4 billion (= \$200 million + \$2.2 billion). This is an increase of percent [= (\$2.4 billion - \$2.1 billion)/\$2.1 billion)] and not the 55 percent incorrectly derived earlier. Comparing market values over time has the disadvantage that prices change. If the market value in year 2 is 10 percent greater than in year 1, we cannot say the economy s production has increased 10 percent. It depends on what has been happening to prices; on whether the economy has been experiencing inflation or deflation. 24-1

2 To resolve this problem, statisticians deflate (in the case of inflation) or inflate (in the case of deflation) the value figures for the total output so that only real changes in production are recorded. To do this, each item is assigned a weight corresponding to its relative importance in the economy. Housing, for example, is given a high weight because of its importance in the average budget. A book of matches would be given a very low weight. Thus, the price of housing increasing by 5 percent has a much greater effect on the price index used to compare prices from one year to the next, than would the price of a book of matches increasing by 100 percent. 3. Which of the following goods are usually intermediate goods and which are usually final goods: running shoes; cotton fibers; watches; textbooks; coal; sunscreen lotion; lumber? LO1 Answer: Running shoes are usually a final good. The person purchasing the running shoes is typically the individual who will use the shoes. Cotton fibers are usually an intermediate good. The cotton fibers are used to produce other goods that will be sold on the market. Watches are usually a final good. The person purchasing the watch is typically the individual who will use the watch. Textbooks are usually a final good. The person purchasing the textbook is typically the individual who will use the textbook. Coal is usually an intermediate good. The coal is used to produce other goods, primarily electricity, that will be sold on the market. Sunscreen lotion is usually a final good. The person purchasing the sunscreen lotion is typically the individual who will use the sunscreen lotion. 4. Why do economists include only final goods and services in measuring GDP for a particular year? Why don t they include the value of the stocks and bonds bought and sold? Why don t they include the value of the used furniture bought and sold? LO1 Answer: The dollar value of final goods includes the dollar value of intermediate goods. If intermediate goods were counted, then multiple counting would occur. The value of steel (intermediate good) used in autos is included in the price of the auto (the final product). This value is not included in GDP because such sales and purchases simply transfer the ownership of existing assets; such sales and purchases are not themselves (economic) investment and thus should not be counted as production of final goods and services. Used furniture was produced in some previous year; it was counted as GDP then. Its resale does not measure new production. 5. Explain why an economy s output, in essence, is also its income. LO1 Answer: Everything that is produced is sold, even if the selling, in the case of inventory, is to the producing firm itself. Since the same amount of money paid out by the buyers of the economy s output is received by the sellers as income (looking only at a private-sector economy at this point), an economy s output is also its income. 6. Provide three examples of each: consumer durable goods, consumer nondurable goods, and services. LO1 24-2

6 PROBLEMS 1. Suppose that annual output in year 1 in a 3-good economy is 3 quarts of ice cream, 1 bottle of shampoo, and 3 jars of peanut butter. In year 2, the output mix changes to 5 quarts of ice cream, 2 bottles of shampoo, and 2 jars of peanut butter. If the prices in both years are \$4 per quart for ice cream, \$3 per bottle of shampoo, and \$2 per jar of peanut butter, what was the economy s GDP in year 1? What was its GDP in year 2? LO1 Answers: \$21; \$30. Feedback: Consider the following example. Suppose that annual output in year 1 in a 3- good economy is 3 quarts of ice cream, 1 bottle of shampoo, and 3 jars of peanut butter. In year 2, the output mix changes to 5 quarts of ice cream, 2 bottles of shampoo, and 2 jars of peanut butter. If the prices in both years are \$4 per quart for ice cream, \$3 per bottle of shampoo, and \$2 per jar of peanut butter, what was the economy s GDP in year 1? What was its GDP in year 2? Sometimes it is easier to use a table to attack this type of problem. Good Price Year 1 Number of Goods Year 1 Nominal Value of Goods Year 1 Price Year 2 Number of Goods Year 2 Nominal Value of Goods Year 2 Quarts of Ice Cream \$ \$12.00 \$ \$20.00 Bottles of Shampoo \$ \$3.00 \$ \$6.00 Jars of Peanut Butter \$ \$6.00 \$ \$4.00 Nominal GDP NA NA \$21.00 NA NA \$30.00 The first step is to find the value of each good consumed. For example, in year 1 the price of a quart of ice cream is \$4.00. Since three quarts are consumed the value of these three quarts is \$12.00 (=\$4.00 x 3). This calculation is applied to each good for each year. The second step is to add up the nominal value for the goods for each year separately. The nominal value of goods for year 1 is \$21.00 (= \$ \$ \$6.00). The nominal value of goods for year 2 is \$30.00 (= \$ \$ \$4.00). 2. If in some country personal consumption expenditures in a specific year are \$50 billion, purchases of stocks and bonds are \$30 billion, net exports are -\$10 billion, government purchases are \$20 billion, sales of second-hand items are \$8 billion, and gross investment is \$25 billion, what is the country s GDP for the year? LO1 Answer: \$85 billion. Feedback: Consider the following example. If in some country personal consumption expenditures in a specific year are \$50 billion, purchases of stocks and bonds are \$30 billion, net exports are -\$10 billion, government purchases are \$20 billion, sales of second-hand items are \$8 billion, and gross investment is \$25 billion, what is the country s GDP for the year? 24-6

7 Given the information above it is best to use the expenditures approach to calculate GDP. This approach adds personal consumption expenditures, gross investment, government purchases, and net exports. Thus, GDP equals \$85 billion for this country (= \$50 billion + \$25 billion + \$20 billion + (-\$10 billion)). Note that the purchase of stocks and bonds along with second-hand items are not part of GDP. This information is extraneous to the question. 3. Assume that a grower of flower bulbs sells its annual output of bulbs to an Internet retailer for \$70,000. The retailer, in turn, brings in \$160,000 from selling the bulbs directly to final customers. What amount would these two transactions add to personal consumption expenditures and thus to GDP during the year? LO1 Answer: \$160,000. Feedback: Consider the following example. Assume that a grower of flower bulbs sells its annual output of bulbs to an Internet retailer for \$70,000. The retailer, in turn, brings in \$160,000 from selling the bulbs directly to final customers. What amount would these two transactions add to personal consumption expenditures and thus to GDP during the year? These two transactions would add \$160,000 to personal consumption expenditures and to GDP during the year. The reason that we do not count the \$70,000 is that this first sale is an intermediate step towards the final sale, and value, of the flower bulbs sold to consumers. This final sale price includes the cost of the bulbs purchased by the Internet retailer. 4. To the right is a list of domestic output and national income figures for a certain year. All figures are in billions. The questions that follow ask you to determine the major national income measures by both the expenditures and the income approaches. The results you obtain with the different methods should be the same. LO2 24-7

8 a. Using the above data, determine GDP by both the expenditures and the income approaches. Then determine NDP. b. Now determine NI in two ways: first, by making the required additions or subtractions from NDP; and second, by adding up the types of income and taxes that make up NI. c. Adjust NI (from part b) as required to obtain PI. d. Adjust PI (from part c) as required to obtain DI. Answer: (a) GDP = \$388, NDP = \$361; (b) NI = \$357; (c) PI = \$291; (d) DI = \$265 Feedback: Consider the following example. To the right is a list of domestic output and national income figures for a certain year. All figures are in billions. The questions that follow ask you to determine the major national income measures by both the expenditures and the income approaches. The results you obtain with the different methods should be the same. 24-8

9 Part a: Using the above data, determine GDP by both the expenditures and the income approaches. Then determine NDP. The expenditures approach: GDP = [\$245 (Personal consumption expenditures)] + [\$33 (Net private domestic investment) + \$27 (Consumption of fixed capital, depreciation) (the sum of these two components measures gross investment = \$60)] + [\$72 (Government purchases)] + [\$11 (net exports)] = \$245 + \$60 + \$72 + \$11 = \$388. The income approach: GDP = \$223 (compensation of employees) + \$14 (Rents) + \$13 (Interest) + \$33 (Proprietor's income) + \$56 (Corporate profits) + \$18 (Taxes on production and imports) + \$27 (Consumption of fixed capital, depreciation) - \$4 (Net foreign factor income) + \$8 (Statistical discrepancy) = \$223 + \$14 + \$13 + \$33 + \$56 + \$18 + \$27 -\$4 + \$8 = \$388 Both methods will give us the same answer. Net Domestic Product equals GDP minus Consumption of fixed capital (depreciation). NDP = \$388 - \$27 = \$361. Part b: Now determine NI in two ways: first, by making the required additions or subtractions from NDP; and second, by adding up the types of income and taxes that make up NI. 24-9

10 Net Domestic Product Approach: National Income = \$361 (Net Domestic Product) - \$8 (Statistical discrepancy) + \$4 (Net foreign factor income) = \$357. Income and Taxes Approach: National Income = \$223 (Compensation of employees) + \$14 (Rents) + \$13 (Interest) + \$33 (Proprietor's income) + \$56 (Corporate profits) + \$18 (Taxes on production and imports) = \$357. Part c: Adjust NI (from part b) as required to obtain PI. Personal Income = \$357 (National Income) - \$18 (Taxes on production and imports) -\$20 (Social security contributions) - \$19 (Corporate income taxes) - \$21 (Undistributed corporate profits) + \$12 (Transfer payments) = \$291. Part d: Adjust PI (from part c) as required to obtain DI. Disposable Income = \$291 (Personal Income) - \$26 (Personal Taxes) = \$ Using the following national income accounting data, compute (a) GDP, (b) NDP, and (c) NI. All figures are in billions. LO2 Answer: (a) GDP = \$343.7; (b) NDP = \$331.9; (c) NI = \$ Feedback: Consider the following example. Using the following national income accounting data, compute (a) GDP, (b) NDP, and (c) NI. All figures are in billions

11 Part a: Using the expenditures approach, GDP = \$219.1 (Personal consumption expenditures) + \$52.1 (Net private domestic investment) + \$11.8 (Consumption of fixed capital) + \$59.4 (Government purchases) + \$17.8 (U.S. exports of goods and services) - \$16.5 (U.S. Imports of goods and services) = \$ Part b: Net Domestic Product = \$343.7 (GDP) - \$11.8 (Consumption of fixed capital) = \$ Part c: National Income = \$331.9 (Net Domestic Product) + \$2.2 (Net foreign factor income) - \$0 (Statistical discrepancy) = \$ We have the following table summarizing these steps. (a) Personal consumption expenditures (C) \$219.1 Government purchases (G) 59.4 Gross private domestic investment (I g ) 63.9 ( ) Net exports (X n ) ( ) 1.3 Gross domestic product (GDP) \$343.7 (b) Consumption of fixed capital Net domestic product (NDP) \$331.9 (c) Net foreign factor income earned in U.S. 2.2 Statistical discrepancy 0 National income (NI) \$

12 6. Suppose that in 1984 the total output in a single-good economy was 7000 buckets of chicken. Also suppose that in 1984 each bucket of chicken was priced at \$10. Finally, assume that in 2005 the price per bucket of chicken was \$16 and that 22,000 buckets were produced. Determine the GDP price index for 1984, using 2005 as the base year. By what percentage did the price level, as measured by this index, rise between 1984 and 2005? What were the amounts of real GDP in 1984 and 2005? LO3 Answer: GDP Price Index = 62.5; price level increased by 60%; Real GDP in 1984 = \$112,000; Real GDP in 2005 = \$352,000. Feedback: Consider the following example. Suppose that in 1984 the total output in a single-good economy was 7000 buckets of chicken. Also suppose that in 1984 each bucket of chicken was priced at \$10. Finally, assume that in 2005 the price per bucket of chicken was \$16 and that 22,000 buckets were produced. Determine the GDP price index for 1984, using 2005 as the base year. By what percentage did the price level, as measured by this index, rise between 1984 and 2005? What were the amounts of real GDP in 1984 and 2005? To determine the GDP price index for 1984 using 2005 as a base year we proceed as follows: The simple approach, given that we only have one good in the economy, is to take the price in 1984, divide by the price in 2005, and multiply by 100. This gives us (\$10/\$16) x 100 = A version that extends to multiple goods is as follows: First, multiply the buckets of chicken in 2005 by the price of a bucket of chicken in 2005, which gives is the value \$352,000 = \$16 x 22,000. (We would do this for all goods and add up each value.) Second, multiply the buckets of chicken in 2005 by the price of a bucket of chicken in 1984, which gives us \$220,000 = \$10 x 22,000. (We would do this for all goods and add up each value. Be sure to use the 2005 quantities and the 1984 prices). This process fixes quantity in the base year and varies prices (CPI). Finally, divide the value of the buckets of chicken using 1984 prices by the value of the bucket of chicken using 2005 prices (the base year). This gives us a GDP price index for 1984 = (\$220,000/\$352,000) x 100 = ((\$10 x 22,000) / (\$16 x 22,000)) x 100 = (\$10/\$16) x 100 = In both cases, the price level increased by 60% = (( )/62.5) = ((16-10)/10) x

13 Real GDP in 1984 and 2005, where 2005 is the base, can be found by dividing nominal GDP by the year s price index (remember to convert the price index back into decimal form.) Nominal GDP in 2005 is \$352,000 = \$16 (price 2005) x 22,000 (output 2005). The price index for 2005 is 100 (by definition, base year). Thus, Real GDP = \$352,000 (nominal output 2005) / (100/100) (The price index 2005 scaled to decimal form) = \$352,000/1 = \$352,000. Nominal GDP in 1984 is \$70,000 = \$10 (price 1984) x 7,000 (output 1984). The price index for 1984 is 62.5 (found above). Thus, Real GDP = \$70,000 (nominal output 1984) / (62.5/100) (The price index 1984 scaled to decimal form) = \$70,000/0.625 = \$112, The following table shows nominal GDP and an appropriate price index for a group of selected years. Compute real GDP. Indicate in each calculation whether you are inflating or deflating the nominal GDP data. LO3 Answer: The table should be updated with the following values for Real GDP: Real GDP 1968 = \$ (inflating) Real GDP 1978 = \$ (inflating) Real GDP 1988 = \$ (inflating) Real GDP 1998 = \$10, (inflating) Real GDP 2008 = \$13, (deflating) Feedback: Consider the following example. The following table shows nominal GDP and an appropriate price index for a group of selected years. Compute real GDP. Indicate in each calculation whether you are inflating or deflating the nominal GDP data

14 Real GDP can be found by dividing nominal GDP by the price index (decimal form) for that year. If the price index is below 100 you inflating GDP and if the price level is above 100 you are deflating GDP Real GDP 1968 = \$909.8/(22.01/100) = \$ (inflating) Real GDP 1978 = \$2293.8/(40.40/100) = \$ (inflating) Real GDP 1988 = \$5100.4/(66.98/100) = \$ (inflating) Real GDP 1998 = \$8793.5/(85.51/100) = \$10, (inflating) Real GDP 2008 = \$14,441.4/(108.48/100) = \$13, (deflating) 8. Assume that the total value of the following items is \$600 billion in a specific year for Upper Mongoose: net exports = \$50 billion; value of new goods and services produced in the underground economy = \$75 billion; personal consumption expenditures = \$300 billion; value of the services of stay-at-home parents = \$25 billion; gross domestic investment = \$100 billion; government purchases = \$50 billion. What is Upper Mongoose s GDP for the year? What is the size of the underground economy as a percentage of GDP? By what percentage would GDP be boosted if the value of the services of stay-at-home spouses were included in GDP? LO4 Answers: \$500 billion; 15 percent; 5 percent. Feedback: Consider the following example. Assume that the total value of the following items is \$600 billion in a specific year for Upper Mongoose: net exports = \$50 billion; value of new goods and services produced in the underground economy = \$75 billion; personal consumption expenditures = \$300 billion; value of the services of stay-at-home parents = \$25 billion; gross domestic investment = \$100 billion; government purchases = \$50 billion. What is Upper Mongoose s GDP for the year? What is the size of the underground economy as a percentage of GDP? By what percentage would GDP be boosted if the value of the services of stay-at-home spouses were included in GDP? Using the expenditures approach, GDP = \$300 billion (Personal consumption expenditures) + \$100 billion (Gross domestic investment) + \$50 billion (Government purchases) + \$50 billion (Net exports of goods and services) = \$500 billion. The size of the underground economy is \$75 billion. Thus, the size of the underground economy as a percentage of GDP equals 15% (= (\$75 billion / \$500 billion) x 100). If the GDP measure incorporated the value of the services of stay-at-home spouses, the new GDP amount would equal \$525 billion (= \$500 billion (from above) + \$25 billion (stay-at-home spouses)). The increase in GDP is 5% (= ((\$525 -\$500)/\$500) x 100)

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