Colombia GDP Q1 2016


GDP growth slows to nearly-seven-year low

In Q1, GDP grew 2.5% over the same quarter last year, which came in well below the revised 3.4% increase registered in Q4 (previously reported: +3.3% year-on-year) and marked the lowest figure since Q3 2009. Moreover, the reading was slightly lower than market expectations of a 2.6% increase. In seasonally-adjusted terms, the economy expanded 0.2% over the previous quarter, which was a weaker expansion than Q4’s revised 0.8% growth (previously reported: +1.1% quarter-on-quarter).

Q1’s disappointing result reflected depressed prices for Colombia’s major exports in the first three months of the year. Oil prices hit a multi-year low in February and agricultural activity, particularly in coffee, has been dampened as a result of inclement weather associated with the El Niño phenomenon. On top of this, the Central Bank’s tightening cycle, which started in September of last year, likely weighed on domestic demand.

Panelists participating in the LatinFocus Consensus Forecast project that GDP will expand 2.3% in 2016, which is down 0.1 percentage points from the previous month’s estimate. In 2017, panelists expect GDP to grow 3.0%.

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Colombia GDP Chart

Colombia GDP Q116

Note: Year-on-year changes of GDP in %.
Source: Colombia National Statistical Institute (DANE) and LatinFocus Consensus Forecast.

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