Stable growth in mainland GDP in 2017

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Growth in gross domestic product (GDP) for mainland Norway was 0.6 per cent in the 4th quarter of 2017, the same rate of growth as the three previous quarters. For the year as a whole, mainland GDP rose by 1.8 per cent in 2017, compared to 1.0 per cent the year before.

Figure 1. Gross domestic produkt. Seasonally adjusted. Volume indices. 2015=100

Gross domestic product Gross domestic product, Mainland-Norway
Q1-2005 86.75 76.71
Q2-2005 87.21 78.78
Q3-2005 87.93 78.85
Q4-2005 88.13 80.31
Q1-2006 88.7 81.04
Q2-2006 88.81 82.04
Q3-2006 89.72 82.54
Q4-2006 91.36 84.92
Q1-2007 91.43 85.95
Q2-2007 91.43 86.25
Q3-2007 92.6 88.38
Q4-2007 93.61 88.92
Q1-2008 92.47 88.27
Q2-2008 92.51 89.53
Q3-2008 92.35 89.85
Q4-2008 92.63 87.82
Q1-2009 91.88 87.43
Q2-2009 91.08 87.55
Q3-2009 91.13 87.29
Q4-2009 91.18 87.88
Q1-2010 92.98 89.28
Q2-2010 91.99 89.02
Q3-2010 89.71 89.4
Q4-2010 92.22 89.24
Q1-2011 92.26 90.06
Q2-2011 91.88 90.76
Q3-2011 93.36 91.2
Q4-2011 93.41 91.83
Q1-2012 95.4 93.55
Q2-2012 95.63 93.79
Q3-2012 94.24 94.43
Q4-2012 95.01 95.12
Q1-2013 95.22 95.81
Q2-2013 95.91 95.83
Q3-2013 96.85 96.77
Q4-2013 96.68 97.5
Q1-2014 97.16 97.69
Q2  2014 97.87 98.62
Q3  2014 98.27 98.84
Q4 2014 99.51 99.45
Q1-2015 99.24 99.73
Q2-2015 99.74 100.03
Q3-2015 100.91 100.19
Q4-2015 100.11 100.05
Q1-2016 101.06 100.47
Q2-2016 100.86 100.9
Q3-2016 100.09 100.97
Q4-2016 101.97 101.16
Q1-2017 101.76 101.8
Q2-2017 102.85 102.45
Q3-2017 103.68 103.2
Q4-2017 103.39 103.81

Figure 2. Gross fixed capital formation and consumption. Seasonally adjusted. Volume indices. 2015=100

Gross fixed capital formation, Mainland-Norway Consumption in households
Q1-2005 77.39 73.89
Q2-2005 79.19 74.95
Q3-2005 81.08 76.42
Q4-2005 87.52 75.49
Q1-2006 84.52 77.33
Q2-2006 90.12 78.9
Q3-2006 87.71 79.87
Q4-2006 93.09 80.32
Q1-2007 96.07 82.09
Q2-2007 98.84 82.99
Q3-2007 101.13 84.17
Q4-2007 109.84 85
Q1-2008 104.56 86.11
Q2-2008 102.27 86.05
Q3-2008 102.42 84.59
Q4-2008 101.38 83.68
Q1-2009 92.58 82.84
Q2-2009 89.66 84.64
Q3-2009 88.09 85.62
Q4-2009 96.45 86.09
Q1-2010 84.15 87.75
Q2-2010 84.85 87.5
Q3-2010 85.74 88.42
Q4-2010 88.6 88.97
Q1-2011 91.59 89.22
Q2-2011 89.29 89.84
Q3-2011 89.61 90.12
Q4-2011 90.92 91.14
Q1-2012 91.93 92.16
Q2-2012 92.56 93.19
Q3-2012 99.63 93.86
Q4-2012 103.63 94.02
Q1-2013 95.5 95.42
Q2-2013 100.53 95.68
Q3-2013 100.28 96.4
Q4-2013 102.4 96.58
Q1-2014 99.28 96.94
Q2  2014 101.41 97.74
Q3  2014 100.08 97.94
Q4 2014 100.01 98.65
Q1-2015 99.51 99.16
Q2-2015 100.05 99.94
Q3-2015 99.57 100.24
Q4-2015 100.88 100.66
Q1-2016 102.84 101.03
Q2-2016 105.14 100.69
Q3-2016 107.74 101.35
Q4-2016 107.68 102
Q1-2017 110.56 102.69
Q2-2017 112.01 103.63
Q3-2017 112.36 104.27
Q4-2017 114.62 105.14

Throughout 2017, the strongest contribution to the growth of mainland GDP came from building and construction activities. Activity in this industry has been high since 2015, and seasonally adjusted figures from the National accounts show that the gross product increased by 1.4 per cent in the 4th quarter. For the year as a whole, production in building and construction increased by 4.4 per cent, roughly the same as in 2016.

Seasonally adjusted figures show a clear production growth in manufacturing and mining in the 4th quarter of 1.3 per cent. We need to return to the 3rd quarter of 2014 to see similar growth. Particularly in the second half of 2016, production was weak, and the recovery in manufacturing and mining started at the beginning of 2017. For 2017, production was 0.3 per cent higher than in 2016. In the 4th quarter, production growth was relatively widespread, but the fishing industry and production of metal products were among the strongest contributors.

Value added in service industries excluding general government grew clearly throughout 2017, especially in the last three quarters. Seasonally adjusted figures show that the increase was 0.6 per cent in the 4th quarter, compared to 0.8 per cent the previous quarter. From 2016 to 2017, service production increased by 1.5 per cent. Several industry groups experienced good growth, and business services in particular contributed to the increase, while a decline in oil and gas extraction services pulled the figures down. Value added in the public sector increased by 0.2 per cent in the 4th quarter and by 2 per cent from 2016 to 2017.

Activity in the petroleum sector fell by 4.7 per cent in the 4th quarter following an upswing in the two previous quarters. This contributed to a 0.3 per cent decline in GDP in this quarter. For the year 2017, GDP increased by 1.8 per cent.

Moderate consumption growth in households

Household consumption increased by 0.8 per cent in the 4th quarter. This corresponds to roughly the same rate of growth since the 3rd quarter of 2016. Growth in commodity consumption in this period was somewhat weaker than in service consumption, but consumer spending started again in the 4th quarter, and increased car purchases in particular contributed to consumer growth. Service consumption increased slightly over the previous two quarters, with a seasonally adjusted growth rate of 0.6 per cent. As a yearly average, household consumption increased by 2.4 per cent in 2017, versus 1.5 per cent in 2016.

Public consumption increased by 0.5 per cent in the 4th quarter. From 2016 to 2017, consumption increased by 2 per cent.

Increase in mainland investment

Gross investments in mainland Norway increased by 2 per cent in the 4th quarter and overall for the year they were 5.9 per cent higher than in 2016. Investment growth in the 4th quarter is strongly influenced by public investment in the form of the delivery of three new combat aircrafts. Public investment increased by 5.8 per cent from 2016 to 2017.

Household investment in dwellings, which has had almost continuous growth from early 2015, fell by 4.5 per cent in the 4th quarter. The growth in the three previous quarters, on the other hand, contributed to 7.1 per cent higher housing investment in 2017 than 2016.

Investments in manufacturing and mining increased in the second half of 2017 following a fall in the previous half-year. As a yearly average, investment in industry and mining fell by 8 per cent in 2017, increasing by 8.1 per cent the year before.

Preliminary figures confirm that the decline in petroleum investments is about to level out. In the 4th quarter of 2017, the decline was 1 per cent from the 3rd quarter. For the year 2017, the decline is currently estimated at 4 per cent after a fall of 16.9 per cent in 2016.

Increased exports of traditional goods

Exports of traditional goods increased by 0.7 per cent in the 4th quarter, following a steady rise throughout 2017. Exports of metal products in particular contributed to the increase. In total, exports of traditional goods increased by 2.2 per cent, compared with a decline of 8.2 per cent in 2016.

Preliminary calculations show that service exports increased by 2 per cent in the 4th quarter. However, a sharp decline in oil and gas exports resulted in a decline in the total export volume in the 4th quarter of 2.6 per cent. By 2017, the total export volume had increased by 0.8 per cent following a decrease the year before.

After a decline in the 3rd quarter, imports of both traditional goods and services increased. Total imports of goods and services increased by 2.2 per cent in 2017, about the same as in 2016.

Real wage growth

Annual wage growth for 2017 is estimated at 2.3 per cent. Together with low price growth for household consumption, real wage growth was 0.7 per cent.

Preliminary calculations show that employment adjusted for seasonal variations increased by 0.4 per cent, or about 10 200 persons in the 4th quarter. On average, 29 000 more were employed in 2017 than in 2016. In the 4th quarter, the hours worked increased by 0.6 per cent. There was a corresponding increase in the hours worked in the 3rd quarter, as opposed to a modest increase in the first two quarters of the year.

Revised figures

In connection with the release of figures for the 4th quarter of 2017, new information has been incorporated for all quarters from the 1st quarter of 2017. The seasonally adjusted GDP for mainland Norway has been revised downwards by 0.1 percentage points in the 1st quarter and correspondingly up in the 3rd quarter compared with the previous publication.

For an overview of the revisions in the main aggregates in the last quarters see table 8. For an overview of developments in the gross domestic product for some of our trading partners, see OECD’s statistics..

How the figures are calculated

The sum of four quarters in the Quarterly National Accounts (QNA) makes up the preliminary annual figures until the Annual National Accounts (ANA) for year t are published in August in year t+2 and incorporated as a new base year in the QNA. Hence, 2015 is the base year in the QNA when publishing data in August 2017.

In both the ANA and QNA, the figures stripped of movements in prices are referred to as volume changes, or fixed price estimates in the QNA, and this is done to identify the underlying cyclical pattern of the economy.

Note that in the time series in volume, the figures from the base year and onwards are fixed price figures, while data prior to the base year are chained volume figures. This implies that additivity in volume is lost prior to the base year.

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