September Scottish Economy Nowcasts

Stuart McIntyre & Grant Allan, Fraser of Allander Institute

Once again this month, we’ve run our nowcasting model for the Scottish economy, discussed in more detail here, and produced updates to our estimates of economic growth in Scotland in Q2 and Q3 of 2017.

Nowcasting is a statistical approach that uses the latest official and unofficial data (e.g. business and employment surveys) to provide an estimate of the ‘current’ value or growth of a gross domestic product (GDP).

The advantage of nowcasting is that it can produce estimates of GDP growth well in advance of the official data being released.

For example, official data for GDP growth in Scotland in the second quarter of 2017 is due to be released in October 2017, but our model is able to provide an estimate of it from April 2017, updated monthly, until the official data are released.

Our latest figures, including data released up to the start of September, predict growth of:

  • 0.38% in 2017 Q2
  • 0.43% in 2017 Q3.

These represent a downward revision to our estimates for Q2 (from 0.49% last month) and a slight upward revision to our estimate for Q3 (from 0.4% last month).

However, they do show reasonably healthy quarterly growth and confirm the view that the economy continues to recover after an exceptionally weak 2015 and 2016.

The next Fraser Economic Commentary, in partnership with Deloitte, is due to be published shortly, and we will provide updated forecasts for the Scottish economy there.