The World Economy

Historical Statistics

Angus Maddison
Release Date: February 1, 2004

Following up on his The World Economy: a Millennial Perspective(OECD, 2001) Angus Maddison offers a rare insight into the history and political influence of national accounts and national accounting. He demonstrates that such statistical data can enlighten the analysis of economic phenomena such as growth, market formation, and income distribution.

This approach is particularly interesting for developing countries that often lack the expertise or data to produce good national accounts and are thus deprived of a vital policymaking tool. For OECD countries, it is a reminder that policies need to be grounded in the reality of verifiable economic data if they are to succeed.