Norway: The economy contracts in February for the first time in three months
April 9, 2019
According to monthly GDP data released by Statistics Norway, total economic output decreased 0.4% in February compared to the previous month in seasonally-adjusted terms, contrasting January’s 0.2% increase. In the wider December–February period, the total economy expanded 0.2% from the previous rolling quarter, down from 0.4% in November–January.
Mainland GDP—which excludes hydrocarbon extraction activity and related transport—decreased 0.3% in February from the previous month, contrasting the 0.3% growth in January. This was also lower than market analysts’ expectations of a 0.1% drop. In the December–February period, mainland GDP rose 0.6% from the previous rolling quarter, down from 0.9% in November–January.
In February, private consumption grew 0.1% compared to the previous month in seasonally-adjusted terms, up from the flat result in January. However, government spending fell 0.3%, contrasting the increase of 0.6% in January. Moreover, fixed investment, which is one of the most volatile GDP components on a month-to-month basis, fell 2.1% in February, contrasting 1.6% growth in January. In terms of the external sector, exports fell 1.9% in February, contrasting the 3.8% expansion recorded in January, while the volume of imports shrank 2.1%, which contrasted growth of 3.0% in January.
Author: Edward Gardner, Economist