Panama: Economic activity slows markedly
October 25, 2012
In August, the economy expanded 6.9% over the same month last year, which was well below the revised 11.6% increase recorded in July (previously reported: +8.6% year-on-year), according to the monthly indicator for economic activity (IMAE, Indice Mensual de Actividad Economica). The monthly slowdown was mainly driven by slower growth in metal, chemicals, plastics and textile production. A month-on-month analysis corroborates the deceleration suggested by annual figures, as economic activity increased 0.47% in seasonally adjusted terms in August, down from the 0.70% expansion observed in July. As a result of the softer annual growth in August, the trend is now pointing downwards, with annual average growth in economic activity inching down from 9.8% in July to 9.7%. Growth in economic activity should remain strong going forward, fuelled by ongoing investment in a project that aims to double the capacity of the Panama Canal by 2014.