Colombia: GDP growth continues to slow in Q4 on deteriorating external sector
March 24, 2015
In Q4 2014, GDP grew 3.5% over the same quarter of the previous year, which came in below the 4.2% increase registered in Q3 and represented the slowest pace of growth since Q1 2013. The reading came in below market expectations of a 4.0% expansion. In the full year 2014, the economy expanded 4.6%, which was slightly down from 2013’s 4.9% increase.
Q4’s slowdown mainly reflected a deterioration of the external sector. Total consumption growth picked up slightly to a 4.9% rise in Q4 (Q3: +4.3% year-on-year). Private consumption growth rose from Q3’s 4.1% to 5.1% in Q4, while growth in government spending decelerated from Q3’s 5.1% to 3.9% in Q4. Conversely, fixed investment growth recorded a slight moderation, slowing from 11.8% in Q3 to 10.1% in Q4.
Exports of goods and services deteriorated in Q4 and swung to a 2.0% contraction (Q3: +4.9% yoy), while imports rose a significant 13.0% (Q3: +8.7% yoy). As a result, the external sector’s net contribution to overall growth worsened from minus 1.6 percentage points in Q3 to minus 4.0 percentage points in Q4, the worst result on record.
In seasonally-adjusted terms, the economy expanded 0.7% over the previous quarter, coming in below Q3’s 0.9% increase.