Chile: Economic growth undershoots market expectations
February 7, 2011
In December, economic activity rose 5.7% over the same month last year, according to the monthly indicator for economic activity (IMACEC, Indicador Mensual de Actividad Economica). The reading came in below the 6.2% expansion registered in November and undershot market analyst expectations of economic activity rising by 7.0%. The December increase was fuelled by growth in the retail, wholesale, transportation and communications sectors. The mining sector, in contrast, contracted owing to production disruptions in the wake of an accident in one of Chile's largest copper mines. A month-on-month comparison corroborates the deceleration suggested by the annual figures, as economic activity remained flat over the previous month in seasonally adjusted terms, after the previous month's 1.29% expansion. As a result of the December expansion, the annual average growth rate rose from 5.0% in November to 5.2% in December. Based on the preliminary monthly results, the economy expanded 5.2% in 2010, just in line with the Central Bank's estimate. For this year, the Central Bank expects economic growth to range between 5.5% and 6.5%.