The National Accounts describe how the Australian economy operates, and how it evolves over time, by measuring, classifying, and aggregating transactions in the economy. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is the highest profile estimate, but the Australian System of National Accounts (ASNA) covers a range of other economic measures. These include a full set of flow accounts for each sector of the economy (income, capital and financial), input-output tables, supply and use tables, satellite accounts, state-based estimates, balance sheets and reconciliation accounts, and productivity estimates.
This publication is a guide to the Australian System of National Accounts. It outlines the major concepts and definitions, describes the data sources and methods used to prepare the estimates, and discusses the accuracy and reliability of the National Accounts.
It is designed for both intensive users, such as economic and financial analysts, as well as less intensive users looking to gain a better understanding of National Accounts, or the Australian economy in general.
This is the seventh edition of Australian System of National Accounts: Concepts, Sources and Methods. The chapters released in this edition have been updated to reflect changes made to the sources and methods used to compile the Australian System of National Accounts undertaken since the sixth edition.
The first edition of the Australian System of National Accounts: Concepts, Sources and Methods, in its current format, was published in July 2012. This was timed to reflect implementation of the 2008 System of National Accounts (SNA 2008), the Sixth Edition of the IMF’s Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (BPM6) and the 2006 Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC06).
The second edition was published in September 2012, and included the chapter on the concepts, sources and methods that underpin the Australian Input-Output tables.
The third edition was published in December 2012 and included five additional chapters covering productivity and analytical measures; state accounts; satellite and environmental-economic accounts; and the quality of the National Accounts.
The fourth (December 2013) and fifth (January 2015) and sixth (March 2015) editions reflected changes to the sources and methods used to compile the Australian System of National Accounts. None of these editions included new chapters.
This seventh edition will be the last edition released in its current format. The ABS intends to launch a web based version in 2022, which will be routinely updated to reflect any changes to data sources or methodology. This will ensure users have access to the most up-to-date concepts, data sources and methodologies used to compile the National Accounts.
Program Manager, National Accounts