Week in Review & Week Ahead

WEEK IN REVIEW

Q2 GDP was revised down to 0.3%qoq (up to 0.9%yoy) according to the Portuguese National Statistics release of demand details. The first Q2 estimate pointed to 0.6%qoq and 0.8%yoy. This revision is already built with the new methodology of the European System of Regional and National Accounts 2010. The new series are now adjusted for working days, besides seasonality, which allows a better understanding of the short-term developments in the economy. Though net exports had a negative impact in the GDP’s yearly change, it was the item contributing the most (+0.8 pp) to GDP growth over Q1. Gross fixed capital formation rose 2.9%qoq, after -4.0%qoq in Q1, which is good news together with the small decline in private consumption (-0.4%qoq and +1.7%yoy). Accumulation of stocks, which had an enormous contribution to Q1 GDP, was now the item pushing down GDP the most.  The projected GDP for 2014 (1% according to the latest Government’s number) continues with downside risks related with the less vigorous performance of exports this year and the still weak investment.

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In the first month of Q3, exports of goods rose 1.3%yoy and imports rose further 3%yoy (+7.2%yoy and 9.9%yoy, respectively, in June). This data confirms the trend of a broadly stagnated goods account, counteracting the upward trend verified until early 2014.

Prices fell for the seventh month in a row in Portugal, declining 0.4%yoy in August after -0.9%yoy in July. The average change in the last 12 months is also in negative territory (-0.2%).

As for some good news, the Eurostat reported that Portugal was the country recording the second highest growth (0.9%qoq) in employment in Q2. This number is likely affected by the Government’s programmes to fight unemployment in below 25-year-old citizens.  EA’s employment went up 0.2%.

 

WEEK AHEAD

16th September

  • Labour Cost index Q2 2014 (Eurostat)

17 September

  • Inflation August (Eurostat): After a flash estimate pointing to 0.3%yoy in the EA in August, this release will breakdown the HICP by countries and may confirm the very low inflation affecting Europe. September’s number may eventually reflect the last measures taken by ECB in the beginning of the month.
  • Fed Chair Yellen holds press conference following FOMC meeting on interest rate policy.

18 September

  • Statistical Bulletin, Bank of Portugal: complete version.