The index level for Norwegian manufacturing in the period August-October 2021 amounted to 118,9 (2005=100). Figures for the last months indicate that the production activity has leveled out (see figure 1).

Figure 1. Production development in manufacturing. Seasonally adjusted and smoothed seasonally adjusted figures¹. 2005=100

¹ March 2020 and the subsequent months are specified as outliers in the seasonal adjustment routine. Hence, the trend figures for 2020 are not included in the figure.

Monthly change: decline in production from September to October

According to In order to facilitate the interpretation of the short-term development, the index of production publishes three-month moving averages of the seasonally-adjusted figures. We normally compare the latest non-overlapping three-month periods. Seasonally-adjusted monthly changes must be interpreted with caution., manufacturing output had a decline of 0.9 per cent from September to October 2021. Food products contributed the most to total decline with a fall of 7.8 per cent. This decline was mainly due to a clear production fall within processing and preserving of fish and has to be seen in connection with an early start to the mackerel season in August and September. In addition, there was also a decline in production within the industry grouping refined petroleum, chemicals and pharmaceuticals, together with non-ferrous metals. Several businesses within these industries reported of instances of downtime and maintenance shutdowns in October.

On the other hand, growth in computer and electrical equipment and repair and installation of machinery contributed to mitigating the overall manufacturing output decline in October.

Figure 2. Indicator for petroleum-related industries. Seasonally adjusted. Three-month moving average¹. 2005=100

¹ The index value for period m is the average of period m, m-1 and m-2.

Three-month change: increase in food products

According to seasonally-adjusted figures, manufacturing output was almost unchanged in the period August to October 2021 with a small decline of 0.1 per cent compared with the previous three-month period. Food products and beverages had the largest contribution in a positive direction with an increase of 1.7 per cent. This was particularly due to growth within processing and preserving of fish. As mentioned earlier this increase is related to unusually high slaughter volumes of mackerel for this time of year.

On the other hand, wood products and the industry grouping building of ships, boats and oil platforms saw declines in this three-month period. The output fall in the latter industry group was due to high production levels in the previous three-month period. The period from May to July 2021 was marked by high activity particularly within the building of oil platforms and modules. Many businesses within this industry reported of large projects and good market conditions in that period.

Monthly change: output fall in the Euro area in September 2021

Estimated figures from Eurostat, the EU’s statistical office, indicate that manufacturing output in the The euro area comprises the 19 European Union (EU) member states that have adopted the euro as their common currency. had an output fall of 0.3 per cent from August to September 2021. In the same period, Norwegian manufacturing production increased by 0.6 per cent.

Sweden saw a production growth of 0.4 per cent, while Denmark had an output decline of as much as 5.6 per cent.

Figure 3. Index of production for manufacturing. Euro area and Norway (2015=100). Seasonally adjusted

Three-month change: strong growth in the petroleum industry

According to seasonally-adjusted figures, the total production index (PII) covering extraction, mining, manufacturing and electricity supply had an output growth of 3.4 per cent in the period August to October 2021 compared with the previous three-month period. The overall growth is driven by extraordinary high extraction of oil and gas, which increased by 7.5 and 13.9 per cent respectively. Higher oil and gas prices have given incentives for increased production on the Norwegian continental shelf. For more details about oil and gas extraction in this period, see the press release from The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate.

Within support activities for petroleum and natural gas extraction, there was an output increase of 1.0 per cent in the period August to October 2021 compared with the previous three-month period. In the same period, mining and quarrying fell by 0.6 per cent, while Norwegian electricity supply saw a severe production drop of more than 11 per cent. The fall in electricity supply must be seen in context with low degrees of filling in the water reservoirs.

Figure 4. Production development. Seasonally adjusted. Three-month moving average¹. 2005=100

¹ The index value for period m is the average of period m, m-1 and m-2.

Thursday 12th of March 2020 the Norwegian government introduced actions against the spreading of the Corona-virus in Norway. Several manufacturing establishment have been affected by these measures, and this has led to a change in the activity pattern compared to what we usually observe. Hence, the seasonal adjustment routine during the Corona- crisis is done in such a way that the figures during the crisis (from March), are not included in the basis for the calculation of the seasonal pattern. Technically, in the seasonal adjustment routine this is done by specifying March and following months as outliers.

This implies that normal trend figures will not be calculated, and instead the trend will follow the seasonal adjusted figures. One important exception is the last observation, where the trend will be an extrapolated figure where the last observation is not included. The trend figures from, and including, March 2020 will therefore be difficult to interpret.

The seasonal adjustment routine of Statics Norway is in line with the recommendations of Eurostat.