from Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies

Global Growth Tracker: World Economies by GDP

This tracker charts the economic growth performance through time of ninety-one countries around the globe.

Last updated July 1, 2021 10:38 am (EST)

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The Global Growth Tracker allows you to gauge trends in economic growth through time across the globe.

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The map below compiles data on economic growth in ninety-one countries around the world, mainly those that report quarterly data to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Growth is defined as the rate of change, over the prior twelve months, in each country’s gross domestic product (GDP), which is the total value of goods and services produced there.

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Hover over each country on the map to see its latest growth data. Countries with positive growth rates are shaded in green; countries with negative growth rates, orange. To view changes over time, adjust the date using the slider at the top left of the map. You can also view each country’s historical growth data on the chart below the map by using the drop-down menu.

Together, the growth data from each country highlights significant global trends. For example, the data shows how the 2008 financial crisis, which began in the United States, caused growth to collapse across the world. In the first half of 2009, three-fourths of tracker countries saw their GDP shrink. By 2016, growth had turned positive in nearly every country, but the global economy began to slow again in 2019. And in early 2020, owing to the global COVID-19 pandemic, growth broadly began to collapse at a pace comparable to that during the Great Depression. In the second quarter of that year, China was the only tracker country reporting a positive growth rate.

As of July 1, 2021, only about forty percent of tracker countries have reported GDP data for 2021. With the pandemic continuing to restrain economic activity, more than half of those countries began 2021 with negative growth.

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The two charts below also show, for twenty-three countries for which the necessary data is available, how each country’s actual growth rate compares to its estimated potential growth rate. Potential growth is defined as the maximum rate of growth that a country can sustain indefinitely. When a country’s actual growth exceeds potential, it exhausts its productive resources, which causes inflation to rise. Countries growing above potential for long periods run the risk of overheating and falling into recession. When a country’s actual growth falls short of potential, by contrast, it fails to make full use of productive resources.

Select a country from the drop-down menu below to compare its actual growth rate and estimated potential growth rate over time. The top chart shows these two data series plotted together. The bottom chart shows the difference between actual and potential growth, or its growth gap. Positive values on this chart indicate that a country is growing above potential; negative values indicate it is growing below potential.

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Data Notes

The map above shows actual growth data for countries that report recent quarterly GDP data to the IMF’s International Financial Statistics (IFS) dataset or whose growth data is included in the World Bank’s Global Economic Monitor (GEM). Growth data for the following countries comes entirely from the GEM: Belize, Egypt, Ghana, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Montenegro, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Peru, Qatar, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Sweden. For all other countries, growth data is taken from the IFS. For quarters in which the IFS does not publish data for a particular country, the tracker supplements IFS data with data released by that country’s government, the World Bank, or the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. With the exception of Canada, IFS data is not seasonally adjusted; GEM data is seasonally adjusted. All growth data is calculated as year-over-year changes in real GDP.

Potential growth data is calculated based on IMF estimates of each country’s potential GDP. Potential GDP is defined as the maximum output a country can produce, in a given period of time, without causing inflation to rise. Unlike actual GDP, potential GDP cannot be observed directly from the real world. Instead, its value is estimated from trends in a country’s labor supply, capital stock, and productivity level.

 

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