Today’s GDP data…

Today’s GDP data shows the Scottish economy grew by 0.3% in the last three months of 2017, bringing headline growth in 2017 in at 1.1%. This blog unpicks some of these numbers in more detail and explains the two different measures used to describe annual GDP growth.

In summary:

  • These data show that the Scottish economy grew by 0.3% in Q4 2017 (compared to 0.4% for the UK as a whole).
  • This makes growth relative to the same quarter the year before 1.1% (compared to 1.4% for the UK as a whole).
  • Or on a 4Q-on-4Q basis growth in 2017 in Scotland was 0.8% (compared to 1.8% for the UK as a whole).

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April 4, 2018

Scottish GDP figures for Q4 2017 – what to look out for…

On Wednesday, the Scottish Government will publish its first estimate of economic growth for Q4 2017.

As always, their publication is likely to attract significant comment. Unfortunately, the immediate political debate is likely to be dominated by whether or not the figure is higher or lower than the equivalent number for the UK.

Whilst understandable, as we have argued on a number of occasions, the Scottish series can be volatile and rather than looking at one quarter’s results in isolation a longer-term perspective (of at least a year) is needed.

In this blog, we highlight some things to watch out for and what may drive the results (up or down).

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April 3, 2018

Scotland’s record year for renewables

Yesterday, the Scottish Government published new statistics on renewable energy generation up to the end of 2017.

The figures show a significant increase in output during the final three months of last year – with 2017 now the best year on record for renewables in Scotland.

With positive economic news not always that easy to find in recent times, these numbers are clearly welcome.

There is an added benefit. Next week’s GDP numbers for Q4 2017 will include this increase in electricity generation. So the numbers should provide a significant boost to the production sector of the economy, potentially lifting the overall quarterly growth figures substantially.

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March 30, 2018

Today’s labour market data in brief…

New data on the health of Scotland’s labour market was released this morning. These provide an update on key indicators like unemployment and employment. In this blog we highlight the key features of these data and highlight some interesting trends.

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March 21, 2018