Belgium: Economic activity deteriorates in final quarter of 2012
January 30, 2013
In the fourth quarter, GDP contracted a seasonally adjusted 0.1% over the previous quarter, according to a preliminary flash estimate released by the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) on 30 January. The reading came in below the flat growth rate observed in the third quarter, but overshot market expectations that had the economy declining 0.2%.
Compared to the same period the previous year, GDP declined 0.4% in the final quarter, which followed the revised 0.4% contraction observed in Q3 (previously reported: -0.3% year-on-year). As a result, in the full year 2012 the economy shrunk 0.2%, which contrasted the 1.8% expansion tallied in 2011. Detailed and more complete data will be published on 6 March.
The NBB expects the economy to remain weak throughout this year and project GDP to record zero growth.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist