This is an archived release.
Substantial growth in Norwegian economy
The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for mainland Norway continued to grow in the fourth quarter of 2004. The annual growth rate for the Norwegian economy is at its highest level since 1998.
According to preliminary figures, real GDP for mainland Norway rose by 1.3 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2004, up from 1.0 per cent in the previous quarter. From 2003 to 2004 the average growth rate was 3.5 per cent. The main driving force behind the development in the fourth quarter was increased activity in manufacturing, construction and services.
GDP for Norway, including oil, increased by 2.9 per cent last year. Following a strong decrease in the total GDP in the third quarter, due to a stop in the oil and gas extraction, the GDP rose by 1.5 per cent from the third to the fourth quarter.
GDP figures for some of Norway's trade partners ( click here ).
Decrease in manufacturing
In manufacturing, the growth in value added was almost flat in the fourth quarter of 2004, after a relatively strong growth in the third quarter. The development has been positive for machinery and other equipment, chemical and minerals and wood and wood products. On the other hand, the meat and beverage industries have experienced lower growth. The total growth from 2003 to 2004 was 1.8 per cent.
Considerable growth in household consumption of cars
According to preliminary seasonally adjusted volume figures, there was a 1.5 per cent increase in final household consumption expenditure in the fourth quarter. 80 per cent of this increase was due to strong growth in household consumption of cars. From 2003 to 2004 the volume growth in final household consumption expenditure was 4.2 per cent. The increase in consumption in the fourth quarter can primarily be attributed to an increase in consumption of clothing and footwear, cars and miscellaneous goods and services. Direct purchases abroad also rose markedly in the same period. From 2003 to 2004 the volume growth in direct purchases abroad was more than 12 per cent.
In 2004, final consumption expenditure in general government rose by 2.0 per cent. A 2.9 per cent increase in final consumption expenditure in central government was the main factor behind this development.
|Gross domestic product 4. quarter 2003 to 4. quarter 2004. Percentage change in volume from the previous|
period (seasonally adjusted)
|2003||2004||4. quarter 2003||1. quarter 2004||2. quarter 2004||3. quarter 2004||4. quarter 2004|
|Gross domestic product (GDP)||0.4||2.9||0.2||1.1||1.1||-0.8||1.5|
|Petroleum activities and ocean transport||-1.0||0.4||-1.2||2.0||2.0||-7.9||2.3|
|Final domestic use of goods and services||0.4||5.7||-1.1||3.2||2.1||0.5||2.7|
|Final consumption exp. of households and NPISHs||2.8||4.2||0.6||1.7||0.1||0.8||1.5|
|Final consumption exp. of general government||1.4||2.0||0.2||0.9||0.8||0.0||0.2|
|Gross fixed capital formation||-2.0||8.9||-7.0||9.6||1.6||4.6||7.8|
|Total man-hours worked||-1.2||2.1||-0.2||1.4||0.4||0.7||0.3|
Marked increase in investment activity
Gross capital formation within oil and gas extraction has been in an upward trend over the last three years, and the growth continued in the fourth quarter of 2004. From 2003 to 2004 the volume growth was more than 11 per cent.
According to seasonally adjusted figures, the investment activity in mainland Norway excluding general government rose by 4.8 per cent in the fourth quarter last year, up from 6.2 per cent in the previous quarter. From 2003 to 2004 the investment activity excluded general government rose by 8.1 per cent. About 50 per cent of this increase can be attributed to dwellings. For industries the increase from 2003 to 2004 were 2.9 per cent.
Strong growth in imports
The total volume of imports increased by 2.9 per cent in the fourth quarter, following a growth of 1.7 per cent and 2.9 per cent in the second quarter and the third quarter of 2004, respectively. From 2003 to 2004, total imports rose by 9.0 per cent. The relatively strong growth is due to higher imports of machinery, cars, furniture and other manufacturing products and direct purchases abroad by resident households.
The preliminary figures for the volume of exports of traditional goods grew by 2.9 per cent in the fourth quarter last year. The increase can mainly be attributed to higher exports of metals. From 2003 to 2004 the volume of exports of traditional goods rose by 3.0 per cent. Excluded refined petroleum products, the exports of traditional goods show an increase of 4.1 per cent in the same period.
Unchanged employment and moderate growth in wages
Preliminary, seasonally adjusted employment figures show that employment was almost unchanged in the fourth quarter of 2004. The employment rose in service related industries, while there was a slight decrease for employment in manufacturing. From 2003 to 2004, total employment for the Norwegian economy increased by 0.2 per cent.
Growth in wages and salaries per full-time equivalents has been estimated to 3.8 per cent in 2004. This is the lowest growth rate for wages and salaries per full-time equivalents since 1995. In manufacturing there was an increase of 4.5 per cent.
Real disposable income was 4.3 per cent higher in 2004 than in 2003. According to preliminary national accounts figures for 2004, households and non-profit institutions serving households (NPISH) had total savings of NOK 83,6 billion, or NOK 4.6 billion more than in 2003.
Figures show that the households saving ratio was 10.2 per cent in 2004. Net lending in the household sector was NOK 51.1 billion in 2004, compared with NOK 54.2 billion in 2003. For more figures, see Institutional Sector Accounts 2004
|Revised figures of final expenditure and gross domestic product for 1., 2. and 3. quarter 2004. Percentage change in volume|
|Seasonally adjusted figures||Unadjusted figures|
|Percentage change in volume from the previous period||Percentage change in volume from the same period in the previous year|
|1st quarter||2nd quarter||3rd quarter||1st quarter||2nd quarter||3rd quarter|
|New result||Former result||New result||Former result||New result||Former result||New result||Former result||New result||Former result||New result||Former result|
|Gross domestic product||1.1||1.1||1.1||1.2||-0.8||-1.0||3.0||3.3||3.8||3.9||1.7||1.8|
|Household final consumption expenditure||1.7||1.8||0.1||0.1||0.8||0.8||5.9||6.0||3.6||3.7||3.5||3.6|
|Final consumption of general government||0.9||0.7||0.8||1.0||0.0||-0.1||1.3||1.0||1.1||1.0||1.3||1.2|
|Gross fixed capital formation||9.6||9.2||1.6||1.8||4.6||4.4||1.3||1.3||3.1||3.4||7.8||8.1|
Revised figures from the first to the third quarter of 2004
The GDP growth for mainland Norway, seasonally adjusted, has been only marginally changed in the first three quarters of 2004. For the other macroeconomic figures there are also only small changes.