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Context:

These figures demonstrate a declining rate of increase in arrivals (in 2006, arrivals fell by 4 per cent) and more significantly in receipts, with a significant reduction in per person average receipts.

The above sentence is about the following table demonstrating Key tourism indicators of a country: Key tourism indicators of a country

I do not get what it means that These figures demonstrate a declining rate of increase in arrivals (in 2006, arrivals fell by 4 per cent). As far as I see, there has been an increase in the growth rate of the last two years.

  • Maybe if you consider the entire table, you would come up with a decreasing trend. I mean in overall, through the year, the trend is decreasing though being increasing in some points. For example, you have negative rates in 2000 and 2001 which can effectively influence the overall trend. – Cardinal Jun 11 '18 at 13:54
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    It is equivalent to a plummeting rate of ascent, of course. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jun 11 '18 at 14:08
  • It means that there is an inflection point in the first time derivative of the price function. – John Lawler Jun 11 '18 at 20:00
  • @Tᴚoɯɐuo Would you explain it in a simpler way? – Juya Jun 13 '18 at 12:09
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    If there is a function P (t) that inputs the time and outputs the price at that time, then it's increasing if P(t+1) is greater than P(t) for every time t. So the curve goes up and up. In calculus the first derivative of a function is its rate of change, so if it goes up, the first derivative is positive. But the derivative is also a function, and if it doesn't always go up, but sometimes goes down, then at those points where it goes down, it is said to have an inflection point. That's as simple as it gets. If you ask a mathematical question, you get a mathematical answer. – John Lawler Jun 13 '18 at 17:53
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If you were to use a spreadsheet to chart the results in column 3, and then requested the spreadsheet to show a trend line for that chart, it will be seen that the trend line does go down.

But you don't really need a chart. You can easily see that the highest value in column 3 during the period from 2001 to 2006 is 13%, with two of them being negative indicating a decline on the previous year. Only three values in the years 1991 to 2000 are less than 13%, with the remaining seven being higher than 13%. So, it is quite obvious that the rate of increase has declined, In fact the average rate of increase has declined from close to 18% for the period from 1991 to 2000, to close to 6% for the period from 2000 to 2006.

  • It's a bit strange because the rate of increase rose steadily between 1994 and 1998. So for those years, it was rising. Then, in the last three years shown, it went up, down and then back to the level of 2003. Anyway, I don't see the point of the author's saying that the rate of increase is declining for the entire period. I would have thought that more interesting is the fact that it spiked, and then did some funny things after that. – Lambie Jun 11 '18 at 14:47
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    @Lambie I agree. The rate of increase actually peaks in 1996. It would have been more correct to say that from 1992 to 1996 there was an upward trend, followed by a downward trend from 1995 to to 2002, which was reversed in 2003 and pretty much plateaued through to 2006. For the reasons given in my original response, I can accept a summary that says there was a declining rate of arrivals over the entire period, however, I agree with you that that hides some very interesting movements during the same time. – James Jun 11 '18 at 15:24
  • I am delighted that my relative innumeracy did allow me to say what I did and that you agreed. :) – Lambie Jun 11 '18 at 15:26

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