On an annual basis, growth in the industrial gross product in 1997 was 3.3 per cent, compared to 2.8 per cent the year before. The new figures show that industrial production has been growing since first quarter 1997. From third to fourth quarter 1997 the industrial gross product increased by 0.7 per cent corrected for normal seasonal fluctuations.
According to preliminary figures from quarterly national accounts, production in Mainland Norway increased by 3.9 per cent in volume from 1996 to 1997. Growth was somewhat stronger than previously calculated and is attributed to new information about the statistical basis. Among other things, industrial production in the first three quarters of 1997 was adjusted upwards.
Service industries also reported stronger growth in 1997 than previously expected, with a 4.1 per cent volume increase in the gross product. By comparison, the previous year's growth was 4.6 per cent. Retail and wholesale trade and business services contributed the most to the growth in services. The seasonal increase in service industries was 0.7 per cent from third to fourth quarter.
After the surge in oil and gas production from 1995 to 1996, the gross product in 1997 was only 1.1 per cent higher than the year before. Seasonally adjusted figures show that production declined from second to third quarter before rising again in the fourth quarter. This caused the seasonally adjusted gross domestic product (GDP) to increase by 1.4 per cent from the third to fourth quarter, while it was unchanged from the second to third quarter. On an annual basis, the GDP was 3.5 per cent higher in 1997 compared to 1996.
Higher holiday spending
Household consumption climbed 3.0 per cent in volume from 1996 to 1997. Strong growth in household spending on overseas holidays helped to increase consumption more than domestic spending on goods and services would otherwise indicate. Seasonally adjusted, consumption was virtually unchanged from third to fourth quarter.
Weekly Bulletin issue no. 6, 1998