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Global Economic Outlook - Methodology


The Conference Board Global Economic Outlook 2020 provides projections for short-, medium- and long-term output growth of the world economy, including 11 major regions and individual estimates for 41 mature and 36 emerging market economies for 2020–2024, and 2025–2029. The Conference Board has published its annual Global Economic Outlook since 2008.

The projections are based on a supply-side growth accounting model that estimates the contributions of the use of factor inputs—labor and capital—, and total factor productivity growth to the growth of real Gross Domestic Product (GDP). While labor input growth rates are estimated using data on demographic changes and work force participation rates, capital input and total factor productivity growth are econometrically estimated using a wide range of related variables during past periods. The obtained trend growth rates for the period 2020-2024 are adjusted for possible deviations between actual and potential output in the short run.

This approach distinguishes The Conference Board Global Economic Outlook from other projections as it helps identify underlying structural changes in the economy by extending projections based on a growth accounting model, looking at the contributions of labor, capital and productivity, over more than a decade. Most forecasters only focus on the next year or two, while the International Monetary Fund provides an outlook that projects five years ahead.

Country list

Mature Economies


Japan, United States


Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Iceland, Norway, Poland, Romania, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom

Euro Area countries: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Slovak Republic, Slovenia

Other Mature Economies

Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Israel, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan

Emerging Markets and Developing Economies


China, India

Other Developing Asia

Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam

Latin America

Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru, Venezuela

Middle East & North Africa

Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Kuwait, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates

Sub-Saharan Africa

Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda

Russia, Central Asia and Southeast Europe

Kazakhstan, Russian Federation, Turkey, Ukraine

Methodological notes

For a detailed description of the methodology, see Erumban and de Vries (2018).

This note provides more details regarding deviations from official GDP growth in the Global Economic Outlook, most notably for China.

The model projects estimates of individual country GDP growth rates. Regional aggregates are computed using Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) converted current price GDP weights averaged for the beginning and the end of each period as weights. The PPPs, obtained from the International Comparison Program 2011, are extrapolated forward and backward in time using movements in national GDP deflators relative to the GDP deflator of the United States.

The underlying historic data used in the projection are primarily from The Conference Board Total Economy Database™, which is a comprehensive database with annual data covering GDP, population, employment, hours, labor quality, capital services, labor productivity, and total factor productivity for 124 countries in the world. 

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Global Economic Outlook - Data & Methods

Klaas de Vries