Investment as a macroeconomic term should not be confused with its more common use as a financial term. Specifically, investment in macroeconomics does not refer to stocks or retirement portfolios.
Rather, investment occurs when goods are purchased for future production, instead of for immediate consumption. For example, households invest by buying houses and building future skills through education. The most prominent use of the term in macroeconomics, however, refers to investment by firms, which can include spending on equipment, technology, research, and facilities.
Investment, consumption, government spending, and net exports are the factors that contribute a country’s GDP.