Greece: Economy growth meagre in the first quarter, but more than expected
May 29, 2015
In the first quarter of 2015, the economy expanded 0.2% over the same period of the previous year, according to more detailed data released by the Hellenic Statistical Authority (EL.STAT) on 29 May. Q1’s reading marked a significant deceleration from the 1.2% increase tallied in Q4 2014, but came in above the flash estimate of a 0.1% expansion. Q1’s slowdown came largely on the back of a deterioration in the external sector.
On the domestic side of the economy, growth in private consumption slowed from the 1.7% increase in Q4 to a 1.2% expansion in Q1. Fixed investment decelerated from a 29.3% in Q4 to a 23.1% in Q1. In contrast, government consumption improved slightly, contracting 0.2% in Q1, which was an improvement from Q4’s 2.6% fall.
Exports of goods and services rose 0.9% in the first quarter, which was significantly below the 10.8% expansion recorded in the fourth quarter. Imports increased 10.6% in Q1, which was below Q4’s 17.3% expansion. Since the slowdown in exports outpaced imports, the external sector’s net contribution to overall economic growth deteriorated from minus 2.7 percentage points in the fourth quarter to minus 3.1 percentage points in the first quarter.
The economy fell 0.2% over the previous quarter in seasonally-adjusted terms in Q1, which followed the 0.4% contraction recorded in Q4 and matched the flash estimate’s figure.