March Nowcasts of the Scottish Economy


Grant Allan & Stuart McIntyre
http://www.nowcastingscotland.com
Fraser of Allander Institute, University of Strathclyde


The performance of the Scottish economy has been relatively fragile for some time now; growth has slowed since early 2015 and shows little sign of picking up. In this blog we provide the latest update from our nowcasting model for Scotland. Further details on our approach and model are available here.

This month our estimates of growth in the Scottish economy put current growth (Q1 2017) at a modest 0.38%. This remains relatively low by historical standards, although better than some recent quarters.

Our most recent nowcast for 2016 Q4, for which official estimates are released by the Scottish Government next month, put growth at 0.42%. This is very marginally better than our current estimate for 2017 Q1.

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March 6, 2017

Tracking local labour market performance since the Great Recession

On Friday, we published the latest edition of our new quarterly publication – Labour Market Trends – with our colleagues in the Scottish Centre for Employment Research.

The aim of the report is to highlight recent developments in the Scottish labour market and to bring to the fore some of the structural issues that underpin long-term trends in employment, unemployment and activity levels in Scotland.

This quarter we highlight a number of important issues, including the recent rise in inactivity and the uncertainty surrounding interpreting changes in the key headline employment and unemployment data for Scotland.

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February 22, 2017

December nowcast update!


Grant Allan & Stuart McIntyre, Fraser of Allander Institute, Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde

This post also appears on our Nowcasting blog: http://www.nowcastingscotland.com


As usual at the start of the month we update our latest nowcasts of the economic growth performance of the Scottish economy.

These nowcasts aim to give a more timely indicator of current economic performance than official statistics which are produced with a considerable lag.

In estimating our nowcasts we make use of a wide variety of different data sources, including the latest business surveys and information on Scotland’s labour market.

Our model produces the following estimates for the third (Jul-Sept) and fourth (Oct-Dec) quarters of 2016:

  • Our latest nowcast for GVA growth in 2016 Q3 is 0.32% which, at an annual rate, is 1.28%.
  • Our first nowcast for GVA growth in 2016 Q4 is 0.37% which, at an annual rate, is 1.50%.

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December 5, 2016

November nowcast update!


Grant Allan & Stuart McIntyre, Fraser of Allander Institute, Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde

This post also appears on our Nowcasting blog: http://www.nowcastingscotland.com


As usual at the start of the month we update our latest nowcasts of the economic performance of Scottish economy.

Our model produced the following estimates for the third (Jul-Sept) and fourth (Oct-Dec) quarters of 2016:

  •  Our latest nowcast for GVA growth in 2016 Q3 is 0.37% which, at an annual rate, is 1.48%.
  • Our first nowcast for GVA growth in 2016 Q4 is 0.37% which, at an annual rate, is 1.47%.

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November 1, 2016

October Nowcasts of the Scottish economy


Grant Allan & Stuart McIntyre, Fraser of Allander Institute, Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde

This post also appears on our Nowcasting blog: www.nowcastingscotland.com


Slightly later than usual, we are releasing the latest results from our Nowcasting of the Scottish economy. These results relate to Q2 and Q3 of 2016. Official estimate for 2016 Q2 will be released next week, and we will preview these in more detail early next week.

In the meantime, the results from our model are as follows:

– Our nowcast for GVA growth in 2016 Q2 is 0.31% which, at an annual rate, is 1.24%. This is slightly up on our last nowcast

– Our nowcast for GVA growth in 2016 Q3 is 0.38% which, at an annual rate, is 1.54%. This is also up slightly from the last nowcast.

Given that this is the final nowcast for Q2 which we will release, it is perhaps worth reviewing the 6 nowcasts that we have for this quarter, these are as follows:

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What should be clear from these results is that as soon as our model incorporated data which related to Q2 itself (the 4th nowcast), the nowcast estimate dropped significantly.

These model results suggest growth in Q2 of around 0.3%. Given that, as we have already said elsewhere, the closure of the Longannet coal fired power station at the end of Q1 is likely to knock anything up to 0.4% off of GDP, it is likely that the Scottish economy contracted in Q2. This is a ‘levels’ adjustment, and our results suggest that the Scottish economy otherwise grew in Q2, albeit rather slowly.

October 7, 2016