Romania: Economy slows in the last quarter of 2011
March 6, 2012
In the fourth quarter of 2011, GDP rose 1.9% over the same period the previous year, according to revised data published on 6 March. The print was in line with the flash estimate released on 15 February but came in significantly below the 4.4% expansion recorded in the third quarter. Based on quarterly figures, GDP rose 2.5% in the full year 2011. The deceleration over the previous quarter was driven by slower growth in the domestic sector. Private consumption rose 2.8% over the same period the previous year (Q3: +3.6% year-on-year), while gross fixed investment remained strong, expanding 10.3% (Q3: +11.4% yoy). Meanwhile, government expenditure fell 3.2% (Q3: -0.6% yoy). The external sector's contribution to overall economic growth improved somewhat but still remained negative, as exports of goods and services slowed to a 4.0% expansion in the fourth quarter (Q3: +9.1% yoy), while imports grew 5.4% (Q3: +12.4% yoy). A quarter-on-quarter comparison corroborates the deterioration shown in the annual figures, as GDP contracted 0.2% in seasonally adjusted terms in the fourth quarter, contrasting the 1.1% expansion tallied in the third quarter. The government expects the economy to grow between 1.5% and 2.0% this year.