Austria: GDP expands less than previously estimated
October 16, 2011
In the second quarter, GDP rose a seasonally adjusted 0.7% over the previous quarter, according to revised calculations by the Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO). The reading was down from the previous 1.0% estimate reported in the 16 August release and followed a 0.8% expansion in the first quarter. The revision reflects a new methodology that also led to an adjustment of GDP figures for previous years (see data section on the following page). On a year-on-year basis, GDP slowed from 4.2% in the first quarter to 3.4% in the second quarter. On the domestic front, the second quarter reading reflected a deceleration in fixed investment, which grew 0.9% in Q2 (previously reported: +0.6% qoq), slower than growth of 1.3% in Q1. Meanwhile, private consumption swung from a 0.4% contraction in Q1 to a 0.4% expansion in Q2 (previously reported: +0.2% qoq). Exports of goods and services increased only 0.1% in the second quarter (initially reported: +1.8% quarter-on-quarter), well below the 3.1% expansion in the first quarter. Imports slowed from 3.6% in Q1 to 0.3% in Q2 (previously reported: +0.8% qoq). As a result, the net contribution from the external sector to overall economic growth deteriorated from a flat figure in Q1 to a 0.1 percentage-point detraction in Q2. The Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO) expects GDP growth to rise 3.0% this year before slowing to 1.8% in 2012. The Central Bank expects the economy to expand 3.2% this year and 2.3% in 2012.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist