Bulgaria: Economy accelerates in Q4 2015
March 8, 2016
In the fourth quarter, the economy expanded 3.0% over the same period of the previous year, according to revised data released on 8 March. The print, which was revised down slightly from the 3.1% increase previously reported, was up from the 2.9% expansion tallied in the previous quarter and marked the fastest reading in five years. Q4’s result came on the back of a significant improvement in total consumption and fixed investment. Moreover, the National Statistical Institute of Bulgaria released a preliminary GDP result for 2015 as whole. According to the Institute, the GDP increased 3.0% in 2015.
Total consumption recorded a 2.7% expansion in Q4 (Q3: +1.0% year-on-year), supported by a substantial acceleration in both private consumption and government spending. Fixed investment rebounded from a 0.4% drop in Q3 to a 1.7% rise in Q4 and thus grew at the fastest rate in over a year.
On the external side of the economy, exports decelerated from a 5.8% expansion in Q3 to 4.2% rise in Q4, which marked the slowest increase in a year. Imports were up from a 3.3% increase in Q3 to a 3.4% rise in Q4. As a result, the external sector’s net contribution to the economy fell from plus 1.5 percentage points in Q3 to just 0.5 percentage points in Q4.