Finland: Growth in economic activity slows in December
February 14, 2018
Economic activity grew a working-day adjusted 3.6% in December compared to the same month of the previous year, down from November’s revised 4.3% increase (previously reported: +3.5% year-on-year). This is according to the latest monthly Trend Indicator of Output, released by Statistics Finland on 14 February.
In December, year-on-year growth in economic activity was supported by expansions, albeit slower than in November, in both services production, the most significant form of production in Finland, and secondary production, which includes manufacturing and construction activity. Services production increased 2.9%, down slightly from November’s revised growth rate of 3.2% (previously reported: +2.0% yoy). Secondary production expanded 5.4%, down from November’s revised expansion of 6.5% (previously reported: +6.4% yoy). Meanwhile, primary production, which includes agriculture, hunting, forestry, and fishing activity, weighed on growth, recording a 1.2% contraction (November: -0.5% yoy; previously reported: -0.2% yoy).
A month-on-month comparison shows that economic activity fell a seasonally-adjusted 0.1% in December, a deterioration from November’s revised expansion of 0.7% (previously reported: +0.4% month-on-month). Annual average growth in economic activity was 3.7% in December, higher than November’s revised growth of 3.6% (previously reported: +3.5%).
On 14 February, Statistics Finland also released flash estimates of economic growth. In the fourth quarter of 2017, the economy grew a calendar-adjusted 3.9% compared to the same quarter a year earlier, an improvement over the third quarter’s 2.8% growth. In quarter-on-quarter terms, the economy grew a seasonally-adjusted 1.1% in Q4 from the previous quarter, higher than Q3’s 0.4% expansion. More detailed estimates will be released on 28 February.
Finland GDP Forecast
The Central Bank expects the domestic economy to expand 2.5% in 2018 and 1.5% in 2019. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists, however, are somewhat more cautious for this year. They expect an expansion of 2.4% in 2018, which is up 0.2 percentage points from last month’s forecast. For 2019, the panel sees GDP increasing 2.1%.
Author: Edward Gardner, Economist