Assessing Economic Performance

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Submitted By scheek555
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Real gross domestic product (GDP) is one of the most important indicators of economic performance. A rise in real GDP indicates economic growth, while a drop in real GDP indicates economic “decay” (Collinge & Ayers, 2004). By definition, GDP is the market value of the final goods and services produced in the economy within some time period, usually one quarter or one year (Collinge & Ayers, p. 425).

Evidence from the CIA Factbook (2014) reveals quite a bit about what factors are important to growth, as the United States (U.S.) has a history of increasing real GDP. For instance, “the U.S. has the largest and most technologically powerful economy in the world” with a per capita GDP of $49, 800, a nominal GDP of $16.72 trillion (PPP) and GDP real growth rate of 1.6% (2013 est.). “New growth theory stresses the association between productivity growth over time and technological advances that are embodied in new capital. Since no one can know beforehand which lines of research will prove fruitful and which will fail, economies that handsomely reward productive ideas will grow the fastest” (Collinge & Ayers, 2004, p. 383).

Similarly, China plays a major global role. Measured on purchasing power parity (PPP) of $13.39 trillion, China in 2013 stood as the second largest economy on the planet (after the United States) due to the value of services it produces. Still, per capita income is below the world average. Her GDP per capita is $9,800, with a GDP real growth of 7.7% (2013 est.) Clearly, the Chinese government is confronted with facilitating higher-wage job opportunities for increasing numbers of college graduates, for example (CIA Factbook, 2014).

In summary, China and U.S. trade agreements and investments have favored the masses (e.g. employment). In my view, these “rivals” are strategic partners and have worthy prospects for the future.…...

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