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GDP (Gross Domestic Product) statistics are generally considered lagging indicators in economics. Lagging indicators are metrics or data points that tend to change after the economy as a whole has already started to follow a particular trend or pattern. GDP is lagging because it reflects economic performance that has already occurred.
GDP is calculated based on various economic activities, such as consumption, investment, government spending, and net exports, over a specific period, usually a quarter or a year. By the time GDP figures are released, they represent historical data rather than current economic conditions. It takes time to gather and process all the necessary information, which causes a delay in the release of GDP figures.
Because GDP reflects past economic activity, it's often used to confirm trends rather than predict future economic changes. Analysts and policymakers look at GDP alongside other leading and coincident indicators to assess the current state and predict the future direction of the economy.