Essay on The Problem With Gross Domestic Product

845 Words Jan 29th, 2016 4 Pages
The Problem with Gross Domestic Product GDP. What is it anyway? It stands for Gross Domestic Product. Here is a simple definition: “The market value of all final goods and services produced in a country during a period of time, typically one year” (Hubbard, O’Brien 605). Do not be fooled however. Figuring out the total value of goods and services produced in the whole country can be a massive undertaking. This is the job of the Bureau of Economic Analysis. But how is GDP useful? What does it do? GDP reveals how much one country is producing which can be beneficial knowledge. Some claim that it also measures the health of the country’s economy. It has long been assumed that the more a country produces, the better off the economy and the citizens. This sounds good, but does it accurately reflect the truth? Many argue, for a number of reasons, it does not. GDP has been used for gauging a country’s progress and well-being, but its shortcomings have some people anxious. Consequently, there is a push to replace the GDP as number one measure for a country’s well-being.
Why is this important? Why cannot GDP be taken for simply what it is? The reason is because so much of the nation’s efforts to grow economically are based in economic indicators such as the GDP. In their article, If the GDP is Up, Why is America Down? Clifford Cobb, Ted Halstead, and Jonathan Rowe address this question stating, “They [economic indicators] define the economic problems that the political arena seeks…

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