Thursday, December 11, 2014

11/12/2014: QNA Q3 2014: Sectoral Activity


Here is the first post on QNA detailed analysis, covering sectoral distribution of activity in Q3 2014.

Note: I covered top level results here: http://trueeconomics.blogspot.ie/2014/12/11122014-q3-2014-irish-growth-broadly.html

Based on seasonally unadjusted data expressed in constant prices (real terms).

Overall all sectors output amounted to EUR40.868 billion in Q3 2014 which is 3.44% higher than in Q3 2013. This marks a significant slowdown on Q2 2014 growth that clocked at 6.53% y/y, but is marginally above Q1 2014 y/y growth at 3.23%.

For the first nine months of 2014, output of all sectors is up 4.41% compared to the same period in 2013. A very healthy number, albeit moderated by the following factors:

  1. ESA2010 application is boosting (superficially) business activity relating to R&D allocations, now counted as investment; 
  2. Ongoing shift in MNCs patterns of activity here, including (but not limited to) outsourcing of production; and
  3. Ongoing shift of the externally trading economy in favour of ICT services, heavily reliant on profit shifting and tax optimisation.



Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing sector output stood at EUR989 million in Q3 2014, which is down 1.59% y/y - the worst performance since Q2 2013. In Q2 2014 y/y growth in the sector was massive 12.43% and in in Q1 2014 it was 3.74%. Over the first nine months of 2014, activity in the sector expanded 5.47% y/y.

Industry, including Construction, output stood at EUR10.281 billion in Q3 2014, which is up 1.96% y/y - a slowdown on Q2 2014 growth rate of 6.47% but an improvement on Q1 2014 decline of 4.97%. Over the first nine months of 2014, activity in the sector expanded only 1.11% y/y, which is weak. Meanwhile, Building & Construction sub-sector output stood at EUR895 million in Q3 2014, which is up 7.31% y/y - a slowdown on Q2 2014 growth rate of 9.54% and on Q1 2014 growth of 9.73%. Q3 2014 growth is the weakest since Q1 2013. Over the first nine months of 2014, activity in the sector expanded 8.76% y/y, which is ok-ish, given abysmally low levels of overall activity. Current level of activity is comparable to Q1-Q3 1997.

Distribution, Transport, Software & Communications output stood at EUR10.832 billion in Q3 2014, which is up 6.39% y/y - a healthy reading. Nonetheless, Q3 growth represents a slowdown on Q2 2014 growth rate of 11.46% and on Q1 2014 growth of 10.67%. Over the first nine months of 2014, activity in the sector expanded by a hefty 9.4% y/y, which is a good news.

Public Administration and Defence output stood at EUR1.572 billion in Q3 2014, which is down 1.26% y/y, against Q2 2014 growth rate of 3.75% and on Q1 2014 growth of 3.67%. Over the first nine months of 2014, activity in the sector expanded by 2.02% y/y in real terms.

Other Services (including rents) output stood at EUR17.622 billion in Q3 2014, which is up 3.67% y/y, against Q2 2014 growth rate of 2.69% and on Q1 2014 growth of 3.85%. So this sector showed acceleration in y/y growth rates. Over the first nine months of 2014, activity in the sector expanded by 3.48% y/y in real terms.

Summary of changes y/y is shown below in the table.


In summary: only one sector of the economy posted higher rates of growth in Q3 2014 compared to Q2 2014. Two sectors of the economy posted declines in activity y/y against four sectors that posted increased activity. This contrasts with all sectors posting growth in Q2.

Stay tuned for further analysis of QNA figures later tonight.

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