The economy is consistently one of the most important policy areas for voters when deciding which party to support. To demonstrate good stewardship of the economy, economic growth is usually considered the best indicator. So governments of all shades are keen to demonstrate that, under their control, the size of the economy has increased. This policy is simply a promise to deliver economic growth as a result of government strategies and investment.
The most commonly used measure of the size of a country’s economy is Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which can be calculated in one of three ways, by adding up either:
- The total value of goods and services (‘output’) produced
- Everyone’s income
- What everyone in the country has spent
It’s worth noting, however, that recent data from the Office for National Statistics showed that UK GDP was “estimated to have fallen by 0.2% in Quarter 2 (Apr to June) 2019”. That’s the first time there has been a decline, even quarterly, since 2012. And if
Despite government reassurances that this fall in GDP is only a blip, given that the policy promises “growth across the country”, we can only rate it as ‘in progress’ for now. We’re basing that on overall growth since the last election. We’ll be tracking to see whether the recent dip develops into a more sustained economic downturn. Follow this policy to stay up to date.
Grow your knowledge base – get the details
- Why does economic growth matter? – Bank of England
- What is the UK’s GDP? – BBC News
- Gross Domestic Product: chained volume measures: Seasonally adjusted £m – Office for National Statistics
- GDP first quarterly estimate, UK: April to June 2019 – Office for National Statistics
- UK economy shrinks for the first time since 2012 – BBC News
- Regional economic activity by gross value added (balanced), UK: 1998 to 2017 – Office for National Statistics