Czech Republic: Economic growth slows slightly in Q4; full year GDP growth rebounds
February 27, 2015
In Q4 2014, the economy expanded a seasonally- and calendar-adjusted 1.5% over the same quarter of the previous year, according to more complete data released by the Czech Statistical Office (CZO) on 27 February. The reading came in above the flash estimate of 1.3%. The print represented a slowdown compared to the 2.2% expansion registered in the previous quarter and the smallest expansion in four quarters. Q4’s moderation mainly was the result of slower growth of investment and inventories.
In the full year 2014, the economy grew 2.0%, marking the first year of expansion following two consecutive contractions, and contrasting 2013’s 0.7% drop.
Private consumption rose 2.0% in annual terms in Q4, which was up from the 1.5% increase observed in Q3 and marked the largest expansion since Q1 2009. In addition, government spending accelerated from a 0.4% rise in the third quarter to a 1.4% increase in the fourth quarter. Conversely, total investment growth decelerated from 5.9% in Q3 to 1.9% in Q4.
On the external side of the economy, exports of goods and services accelerated marginally from a 7.2% increase in Q3 to a 7.4% rise in Q4. Imports also accelerated from a 7.9% increase in the third quarter to 8.4% rise in the fourth quarter. Consequently, the net contribution from the external sector inched down from minus 0.1 percentage points in Q3 to minus 0.2 percentage points in Q4.
Compared to the previous period, GDP grew 0.4%, which came in slightly below the 0.5% expansion recorded in the previous quarter.
Author: Dirina Mançellari, Senior Economist