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Social accounting

The presentation of the national income and expenditure accounts in a form showing the transactions during a given period between the different sectors of the economy. The tabulations are set out in the form of a matrix showing the source of inputs of each sector or part of sector and the distribution of their outputs. The production sector, for instance, shows for an industry how much of its inputs were bought from other home industries, how much it imported and how much it spent on wages, salaries and dividends. At the same time, it shows how much of its output it sold to other industries, how much it exported and how much was consumed by private individuals or the government sector. These transactions of the producers’ sector are counterbalanced by corresponding transactions of the other sectors. For instance, the personal sector shows the value and sources of incomes earned from the producers’ sector and others, as well as the way these incomes are saved or spent on the outputs of the various industries or on imports.

Reference: The Penguin Dictionary of Economics, 3rd edt.