Time of recording

The system of national accounts records the flows on accrual basis. In other words, when economic value is created, changed or destroyed or when claims and obligations are born or they are changed or annulled.

Output is recorded when it has been produced and not when the buyer has paid for it, and sales of assets are recorded when the assets are released and not when the corresponding payment is made. Interest is recorded to the accounting period from which it is generated, regardless of whether it is actually paid in that period or not. Accrual-based recording is applied to all flows, both those in money and those that are not measured in money, both within a unit and between units.

All flows should be recorded at the same time for all institutional units involved and in all concerned accounts. In practice, institutional units do not always use the same accounting rules. And even if they do, there may be differences in the actual recording due to practical reasons like delays in communication. Therefore, the performers of the economic transactions in question may record the transactions at different times. These deviations must be corrected with adjustments.

Validity of the definition

  • Valid until (31 December 2078)

Source organisation

  • EU