Global Output Stagnant

Gary Gardner | Feb 04, 2011


The gross world product increased by just 0.3 percent in 2009 as the Great Recession took hold in many of the world's economies.1 (See Figure 1.) The anemic increase was a sharp slowdown from the 2000–08 period, when global output increased 6.6 percent annually.2 World output is expected to have recovered somewhat in 2010, with growth estimated at roughly 4 percent.3

Gross world product measures the output of goods and services for the world economy as a whole. It is commonly broken into consumption, investment, and government spending. The data presented here are calculated based on the purchasing power parity exchange rate, which converts national output to a common currency that reflects equivalent purchasing power across countries.4

Growth differed markedly by region and economy. Advanced economies actually shrank by 2 percent in 2009, while emerging and developing economies continued to grow—albeit slowly compared with earlier years—at 3.3 percent.5 (See Table 1.) Some of the largest emerging economies grew at very high rates: China’s economy, for example, grew at 9.1 percent in 2009 and India’s at 7.4 percent.6


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