Romania: Second release confirms biggest expansion in over a year
A second national accounts release confirmed that output grew 5.0% year-on-year in the first quarter (Q4 2018: +4.1% year-on-year), marking the strongest outturn in more than a year and overshooting analysts’ expectations.
Domestic demand powered the expansion. Notably, household spending growth was upwardly revised to 7.0% year-on-year (previously reported: +6.7% year-on-year), amid the tight labor market (Q4 2018: +5.9% yoy). In contrast, government spending growth was revised down to 0.1% (previously reported: +3.9% yoy), decelerating from a 0.8% expansion in Q4 2018. Similarly, fixed investment was downwardly revised to a 3.9% annual expansion (previously reported: +5.4% yoy), after having contracted 3.2% a quarter prior.
Export growth, meanwhile, was revised up to 3.6% year-on-year (previously reported: +3.5% yoy; Q4 2018: +4.2% yoy), while import growth was revised up to 10.2 % (previously reported: +9.5% yoy; Q4 2018: +9.0% yoy). Taken together, net exports’ negative contribution to growth in the first quarter nearly doubled from the fourth quarter of last year.
On a seasonally-adjusted basis, output growth was confirmed at 1.3% quarter-on-quarter (Q4 2018: +1.0% quarter-on-quarter s.a.).