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National Transfer Accounts Manual

Measuring and Analysing the Generational Economy

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National Transfer Accounts (NTA) provides a coherent accounting framework of economic flows from one age group or generation to another, typically for a national population in a given calendar year. This manual consolidates and presents in a systematic fashion the concepts, the methods and estimation procedures to measure these flows of resources across age. The NTA estimates are useful to understand and analyse inter-generational economic flows, and the implications of changing population age structures for the fiscal sustainability of social programs, the accumulation of physical and human capital, macroeconomic growth, and familial support for children, youth and older persons.

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The economic life cycle

This chapter describes the methods for constructing National Transfer Accounts (NTA) variables that comprise the economic life cycle account: consumption, labour income and the life cycle deficit/surplus. Public and private consumption are distinguished as well as three purposes of consumption for each: education, health, and consumption other than education and health. Labour income is broadly measured consisting of earnings of employees including benefits and the labour income of self-employed persons including unpaid family workers.

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