Bulgaria: GDP expands at a slower pace than previously estimated
December 4, 2013
In the third quarter of 2013, GDP expanded 0.7% over the same period of 2012 according to more detailed data released on 4 December. The reading was slightly below the 0.8% growth estimated in the preliminary release, however, it overshot the 0.2% expansion recorded in the previous quarter. The increase marks the highest print since Q3 2012.
The acceleration in Q3 reflects an improvement in total consumption due to a 3.9% increase in government spending (previously reported: +2.1% year-on-year; Q2: +2.6% yoy). In addition, private consumption improved slightly from a 1.3% contraction in Q2 to a 1.2% decrease in Q3 (previously reported: -1.0% yoy). Conversely, fixed investment decelerated from a 1.4% rise in Q2 to a 1.2% increase in Q3, which was in line with the previous estimate.
On the external side of the economy, exports of goods and services rose 8.5% over the same period of the previous year (previously reported: +6.7% yoy; Q1: +4.5% yoy), while imports increased 7.4% (previously reported: +5.0% yoy; Q1: +2.0% yoy). As a result, the external sector's net contribution to the overall economy fell from 1.4 percentage points in the second quarter to 0.2 percentage points in the third quarter.
On a quarter-on-quarter basis, GDP expanded 0.5% in seasonally and working-day adjusted terms (previously estimated: +0.6% quarter-on-quarter), which contrasted the 0.1% contraction recorded in the second quarter.
The government sees growth growing 1.8% in 2014. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants expect GDP to expand 1.6% in 2014, which is unchanged from last month's Consensus. In 2015, panelists see the economy growing 2.7%.
Author: Dirina Mançellari, Senior Economist