Decline in manufacturing output flattens out
Energy and manufacturing;Energy and manufacturing;National accounts and business cycles
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Index of industrial productionDecember 2016

The index of industrial production (PII) refers to the total production within extraction of crude oil and natural gas, manufacturing, mining and quarrying, and electricity, gas and steam. The basis of figures covers the whole PII, while the article mainly focuses on manufacturing.



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Decline in manufacturing output flattens out

Norwegian manufacturing output went down 0.2 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2016, compared to the third quarter. Low production within food products contributed most to the overall decline. On a monthly basis, from November to December 2016, manufacturing output increased by 1.1 per cent.

Index of production. Changes in per cent and weights
Index of production. Seasonally adjustedIndex of production. Calendar adjusted1Weights2
Monthly changeThree-month changeTwelve-month change
December 2016 / November 2016October 2016 - December 2016 / July 2016 - September 2016December 2016 / December 2015
1Adjusted for working-days and for public holidays in Norway.
2The weights are updated annually, and are valid for the entire year.
Extraction, mining, manufacturing and elec-2.73.8-1.4100.0
Extraction and related services-4.66.1-1.671.4
Mining and quarrying-2.4-6.510.30.5
Food, beverage and tobacco-2.9-3.0-6.84.7
Refined petro., chemicals, pharmac.-0.6-
Basic metals0.8-
Machinery and equipment1.30.6-17.23.0
Ships, boats and oil platforms3.
Electricity, gas and steam-

The index level for Norwegian manufacturing in the fourth quarter of 2016 amounted to 112.3 (2005=100). The corresponding figure for the third quarter was 112.5. 

Three-month change: Low production of fish, growth in computer and electrical equipment

According to seasonally-adjusted figures, manufacturing output was almost unchanged from the third quarter to the fourth quarter of 2016, with a minor decrease of 0.2 per cent. The industry food products contributed most to the overall decline, with a fall of 3.4 per cent. This reduction in output can partly be explained by a decline in processing and preserving of fish due to forced production earlier in 2016, as well as to reduced fishing quotas. The industry grouping refined petroleum, chemicals and pharmaceutical products also saw a decline in the fourth quarter, due to maintenance shutdown among some leading suppliers. 

On the other hand, the overall decline in manufacturing output was dampened by a strong increase in computer and electrical equipment, as well as by growth in ships, boats and oil platforms. Within the former, the growth can be related to strong activity among producers of electrical equipment. Within ships, boats and oil platforms the growth is related to increased activity among producers of oil platforms and modules. 

Other petroleum-related industries also experienced some growth in the fourth quarter, including repair and installation of machinery, as well as fabricated metal products. Consequently, the analytical grouping petroleum-related manufacturing had an overall increase of 2.3 per cent in the fourth quarter, especially due to an increase in December. These figures for petroleum-related manufacturing are slightly more positive than industrial managers’ evaluation for the business tendency survey for the fourth quarter, which was published somewhat earlier. 

Monthly change: growth in manufacturing output from November to December 2016

According to seasonally-adjusted figures, manufacturing output increased by 1.1 per cent from November to December 2016. Strong activity within computer and electrical equipment together with growth in ships, boats and oil platforms contributed most to this increase. On the other hand, there was a pronounced decline in food products in the same period. 

Twelve-month change: Pronounced drop in Norway, strong increase in the Euro area in November 2016

According to calendar-adjusted figures, Norwegian manufacturing output went down 4.2 per cent from November 2015 to November 2016. Machinery and equipment, together with repair and installation of machinery contributed most to this decline. Estimated figures from Eurostat, the EU’s statistical office, indicate that output in manufacturing in the Euro area had an increase of 2.7 per cent in the same period. 

Three-month change: Strong growth in total industrial production (PII)

According to seasonally-adjusted figures, the total production index (PII) covering extraction, mining, manufacturing and electricity supply, increased by 3.8 per cent in the fourth quarter compared to the previous quarter. Extraction of crude petroleum and extraction of natural gas both saw a pronounced increase: 5.9 and 9.5 per cent respectively. For more details about oil and gas extraction for December 2016, see the press release from The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate

Support activities for petroleum and natural gas extraction fell by 3.9 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2016 compared to the previous quarter. Suppliers within this industry are negatively affected by a low investment level in the oil and gas industry. Production within Norwegian electricity supply increased by 2.8 per cent in the same period, while mining and quarrying had a strong decline of 6.5 per cent. 

New indicators for petroleum-related manufacturingOpen and readClose

New indicators for petroleum-related supplier industries are established in StatBank. These indicators are based on the analytical groupings which were presented in the article Strong growth for petroleum-related manufacturing and support activities from 2010 to 2013 (only in Norwegian).

The three groupings that will be published monthly are: 

  • Petroleum-related manufacturing and support activities
  • Petroleum-related manufacturing (only industries covered by section C Manufacturing)
  • Manufacturing excluded petroleum-related industries