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Definition: Owners and users

National accounts

The current edition of the European System of Integrated Economic Accounts (ESA) records the investment to the branch that owns the fixed capital goods and not the branch that uses them. Due to the development of letting capital goods, in particular as leasing, the differences between results calculated on the basis of either of the two concepts can be fairly substantial for branches. If the capital stock is intended to measure the fixed capital goods used in production it should be calculated on the basis of the user concept. However, if the capital invested into production is to be measured, the implementation of the owner concept is appropriate.
The capital stock in the European Union - Structural diagnosis and analytical aspects, Eurostat 1997