5204.0 - Australian System of National Accounts, 2007-08  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 31/10/2008   
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Investment represents about a quarter of GDP. Understanding which sectors are investing and expanding their future economic capacity provides an insight into the underlying dynamics within the economy.

As a proportion of GDP, investment by Non-financial corporations fell during the 1970s and was reasonably stable up to the 1990s. It has generally been above 10% and in 2007-08 investment by Non-financial corporations was 14.7% of GDP. Household investment as a proportion of GDP declined steadily between 1959-60 and 1973-74 but has since remained steady at around 10% of GDP. In 2007-08 the ratio to GDP was 10.3%. General government investment as a proportion of GDP peaked at 4.6% in 1975-76 and has generally fallen since then. It was 2.6% of GDP in 2007-08. The highest ever level of Financial corporations investment, expressed as a proportion of GDP, was recorded in 1989-90 (2.0%). It has generally fallen since then and was 0.7% of GDP in 2007-08.

Investment, By sector - relative to GDP
Graph: Investment, By sector—relative to GDP

In terms of the different asset types, in 2007-08 private Machinery and equipment investment represented the largest percentage share (26.9%) of total gross fixed capital formulation, compared to 24.3% for private Non-dwelling construction.

Investment, By type of asset - relative to GFCF
Graph: Investment, By type of asset—relative to GFCF

Over the last 10 years, private Machinery and equipment has fallen from around 31.7% to 26.9% in 2007-08 as a share of total gross fixed capital formation. The relative shares of investment in other asset types have remained relatively stable over the last 10 years.