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Over the last ten years the proportion of private gross fixed capital formation (investment) to GDP in quarterly trend terms rose from 15.2% in June quarter 1992 to a high of 19.2% in March quarter 2000, and was 18.5% in the June quarter 2002. Changes in the proportion of total gross fixed capital formation to GDP largely reflect movements in private sector investment.
The national capital account records the saving and investment flows taking place in the economy. It shows how saving, consumption of fixed capital and capital transfers are used to finance the gross accumulation of capital formation.
If, as is typically the case in Australia, the nation’s saving and consumption of fixed capital formation are not sufficient to pay for all its capital formation, the shortfall must be borrowed from overseas. The amount borrowed from overseas is shown in the national capital account as a negative entry for net lending to non-residents.
The national capital account shows, on the receipts side, consumption of fixed capital and net saving (transferred from the national income account) and capital transfers receivable less capital transfers payable to non-residents (transferred from the external account).
Shown on the payments side are new investment in fixed assets (such as equipment and buildings), changes in inventories, acquisitions less disposals of non-produced non-financial assets (such as mineral deposits and other sub-soil assets), a balance described as net lending to non-residents and a statistical discrepancy for years in which supply and use tables are not available.
In principle, the sum of net lending for all domestic sectors is equal to the nation’s net lending to non-residents. However, in practice, net lending for each sector is derived as a balancing item and therefore includes each sector’s share of the statistical discrepancy.
Australian National Accounts: Concepts, Sources and Methods (5216.0)
Contains a detailed explanation of the system of Australian national accounts outlining major concepts and definitions.
Australian National Accounts: National Income, Expenditure and Product (5206.0)
Contains quarterly data for the national capital account.
Australian System of National Accounts (5204.0)
Contains annual data for the national capital account as well as capital accounts for each sector.