ASSIGNMENT INSTRUCTIONS: This project asks you to look at macroeconomic data and

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ASSIGNMENT INSTRUCTIONS:
This project asks you to look at macroeconomic data and tell the “story” of what these data points mean for the economy. You will be interpreting and evaluating data over time. You will also be challenged to refute or defend the idea that data tells the story of an economy.
Choose a country. This country should be one that reports macroeconomic data. Most countries do. But, do not choose a small country with an unstable government which does not report data. You can choose the United States if you like. Check your choice with your teacher.
The data points you are asked to search below will need to go back 10 years. For each data point, you need to show it in graphic representation, such as a bar graph or line graph.
Real GDP (this tells you output, income, and spending in a nation)
Real GDP per capita (real GDP per person in the country; this measures the standard of living)
GDP breakdown:
What percent is consumer spending?
What percent is investment spending (spending by firms)? An increase in investment spending generally means there will be an increase in output, which means economic growth.
What percent is government spending? The important thing about this data is to then look at government deficit or surplus spending. This means, is the government spending all of the revenue it takes in from taxes, or not?
What percent is Net Exports (exports minus imports)? If Net exports are positive, there is a trade surplus, and this increases GDP.
This data can be a pie graph and does not need to go back 10 years as this data stays relatively stable.
Unemployment rate: Researching the unemployment rate over time can tell you if a country is recovering from a recession, or going into one.
Inflation rate: If inflation is increasing, people can buy less of the goods they need. If the rate of inflation decreases, called disinflation, this means that economic growth is slowing down. As prices decrease, this means that an economy is experiencing negative economic growth.
Anything else you want to include or find interesting.
Once you have collected this data, you will be analyzing it and telling the story of this country. Remember, a story has a beginning, middle, and end, and by looking at macroeconomic data over ten years, you will be ready to write the story.
You should tell the macroeconomic story of your country by looking at the data points over time. Is this country coming out of a recession? Is GDP increasing? Is unemployment decreasing? Is inflation increasing?
OR—Is this country going into a recession? Is GDP decreasing? Is unemployment increasing? Is inflation decreasing?
What is the economic breakdown of the GDP? Is the country based on consumer spending, or government spending, etc.? Does the country import more than export, or the opposite?
The beginning of this story should tell about where it was ten years ago. The middle talks about what has happened since, and the end is where the country is now. Take your data and turn it into a good story of this country.
This section should have at least three paragraphs: beginning, middle, and end.
Data: what it tells us and what it doesn’t. This section asks you to consider what the macroeconomic data you collected tells us about the country, and what it doesn’t tell us. Does this data tell us the whole story of a country? Write a paragraph or two evaluating if the data you collected tells the entire story of your country. What don’t you know from this data?

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