Lithuania: GDP growth gains momentum in Q4
February 28, 2014
In the fourth quarter, GDP grew 3.6% over the same period of the previous year according to revised data published on 28 February. The result was above the 2.2% expansion recorded in the third quarter and slightly above the 3.3% increase reported in the 30 January flash estimate. The acceleration was driven primarily by strong inventory restocking and government spending. In the full year 2013, GDP expanded 3.3%, which was down from the 3.7% registered in 2012.
On the domestic side, government consumption increased 1.8% over the same period of the previous year (Q3: +1.4% year-on-year). Private consumption growth was solid, although it decelerated, growing 4.8% in Q4 (Q3: +6.2% yoy). Similarly, fixed investment expanded a robust 14.2% in Q4 (Q3: +16.9% yoy).
On the external side, exports of goods and services slowed from a 6.3% expansion in the third quarter to a 3.1% rise in the fourth. Simultaneously, imports rose 5.9% (Q3: +8.5% yoy). As a result, the external sector's net contribution to overall economic growth deteriorated from minus 1.4 percentage points in the third quarter to minus 2.1 percentage points in the fourth.
A quarter-on-quarter analysis corroborates the acceleration suggested by annual figures; GDP expanded a seasonally and working-day adjusted 1.2% over the previous quarter in Q4, which was up from the 0.4% increase registered in the third quarter.
The Central Bank expects GDP to grow 3.5% in 2014. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists see the economy growing 3.5% in 2014, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month's estimate. In 2015, the panel expects GDP to expand 3.8%.
Author: Carl Kelly, Economist