There is a surprisingly good relationship between a country’s results in the Six Nations rugby tournament and GDP growth in the prior year. To be fair, we won’t be making any bets based on this relationship, but if we were, our money would be on Ireland winning the tournament this year and England coming third. However, our forecasts for GDP growth in 2022 suggest England may romp back to a winning position next year.
The chart plots England’s Six Nations results (with one being the winner of the tournament and six being lowest placed) against England’s GDP growth in the preceding year out of the six countries that make up the tournament. So, if GDP growth in England was the strongest it would be ranked number one for that year, the country with weakest GDP growth rate is ranked number six.
As you can see, the relationship is surprisingly strong, with a correlation of almost 0.7! This suggests that quicker GDP growth in one year leads to a higher rank in the six nations tournament the next year.
Unfortunately for England fans, our GDP growth estimate of 6.8% in 2021 puts England in third position in our GDP growth table, suggesting that it will only improve a little on last year’s 5th place finish in the tournament. Ireland’s rapid GDP growth of 15% in 2021 suggests it will win the tournament this year.
However, our forecast of 4.5% GDP growth in 2022 for England is the fastest out of the six countries and suggests that England will take home the trophy in 2023!