Italy: GDP falls in Q4
March 12, 2012
In the fourth quarter, GDP fell a seasonally and working-day adjusted 0.7% over the previous quarter, confirming the preliminary estimate released by the National Statistics Office (ISTAT) on 15 February. The reading marked a further deterioration compared to the 0.2% drop recorded in the previous quarter, in addition to representing the worst contraction since Q1 2009. On an annual basis, the economy shrank 0.4%, contrasting the 0.4% expansion recorded in the previous quarter and marking the first annual drop since the final quarter of 2009. The quarterly contraction was broad-based, reflecting a deterioration in both the domestic and the external sector. Private consumption contracted 0.7%, following the 0.4% drop recorded in Q3. Fixed investment plunged an even larger 2.4%, deteriorating even further from the 0.6% fall recorded in the previous three-month period. Meanwhile, exports of goods and services remained flat in Q4, contrasting the 2.0% rise recorded in the previous quarter, while imports contracted 2.5%, more than doubling Q3's 1.2% drop. As a result, the external sector's net contribution to overall growth fell from plus 0.9 percentage points in Q3 to plus 0.7 percentage points in Q4.
Author: Armando Ciccarelli, Head of Data Solutions