Upturn in mainland economy still on hold
National accounts and business cycles
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National accountsJune 2013



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Upturn in mainland economy still on hold

The gross domestic product (GDP) of mainland Norway grew 0.2 per cent in the 2nd quarter of 2013, down from 0.6 per cent in the previous quarter, according to preliminary seasonally-adjusted volume figures. Lower activity was evident in several service industries, in addition to a fall in the value added of electricity and construction from the 1st to the 2nd quarter.

Gross domestic product. Seasonally adjusted change in volume from the previous period. Per cent
20123rd quarter 20124th quarter 20121st quarter 20132nd quarter 2013
Gross domestic product3.1-0.50.2-0.10.8
Gross domestic product Mainland Norway3.
Petroleum activities and ocean transport1.8-5.40.3-2.93.5
Final domestic use of goods and services3.
Final consumption expenditure of households and NPISH3.
Final consumption expenditure of general government1.
Gross fixed capital formation8.04.02.1-2.05.1
Total exports1.8-3.1-1.2-1.72.2
Total imports2.41.9-0.8-1.80.9
Employed persons2.
Total hours worked2.

The cyclical upturn following the financial crisis seems to have stalled over the last three quarters, according to the latest preliminary figures. From the 3rd quarter of 2012 to the 2nd quarter of 2013, the GDP of mainland Norway increased by 1.2 per cent, calculated as a yearly rate of change. Lower production of electricity has in isolation contributed to a negative 0.3 percentage points. The underlying growth rate of the mainland economy in the last three quarters has thus been less than the trend growth, which is estimated at 2.5 per cent.

Strong growth in manufacturing

Gross value added in manufacturing increased by 2.6 per cent in the 2nd quarter of 2013. The strong growth was for the most part due to increased activity in the industries Machinery and other equipment, Building of ships, oil platforms and modules, and Repair and installation of machinery and equipment, which grew by 4.9 per cent overall.

Other goods-producing industries fell by 1.2 per cent, with the strongest negative contributions from a fall in the production of electricity and construction. The fall in value added of construction must be viewed in conjunction with the strong increase in the 1st quarter as well as the unusual placement of Easter this year, which contributes to a larger uncertainty of the estimated calendar-adjusted and seasonal-adjusted figures (which also applies to the estimates of other industries). Aquaculture and agriculture also fell from the 1st to the 2nd quarter, while traditional fisheries rose.

Value added in service activities excluding general government was up 0.2 per cent in the 2nd quarter. General government grew by 0.5 per cent, with the strongest growth in health and social work.

Lower consumption of goods

Household final consumption expenditures grew by 0.1 per cent from the 1st to the 2nd quarter. Goods consumption fell by 0.2 per cent in the 2nd quarter, down from 1.8 per cent in the 1st quarter of 2013. There was a marked negative contribution from the consumption of motor vehicles in the 2nd quarter, which rose sharply in the 1st quarter, as well as a fall in the consumption of electricity, amongst others. Household final consumption expenditures on services grew by 0.6 per cent, up from 0.4 per cent in the two previous quarters. Household consumption abroad was up 0.3 per cent, after several quarters of strong growth.

Higher investments

Gross fixed capital formation (GFCF) in mainland Norway rose by 1.8 per cent in the 2nd quarter. GFCF in mainland industries grew by 5.8 per cent, which is seen in conjunction with a clear reduction in the previous quarter. GFCF in manufacturing and electricity showed a marked increase from the 1st to the 2nd quarter, while household investments in dwellings fell slightly.

Increased net exports

Increased exports of natural gas contributed most to the rise of exports of 2.2 per cent in the 2nd quarter, but exports of traditional goods and services also rose in the 2nd quarter of 2013. Imports were up 0.9 per cent.

Higher employment

Employment grew by 0.3 per cent in the 2nd quarter, about the same as in the previous quarter. The growth in employment was strong throughout 2011 and the first half of 2012, but has since levelled out. The increase in employment in the first half of 2013 has been most evident within general government and construction.


When compiling figures for the 2nd quarter, the 1st quarter of 2013 has been subject to revisions due to the incorporation of new information. For an overview of revisions in the main aggregates, please refer to table number 48 in Tables. The seasonally-adjusted figures are revised from the 1st quarter of 2009 and onwards, in accordance with our seasonal adjustment routines. For more information on compilation methods and seasonal adjustment practice, please see About the statistics and On seasonal adjustment of the quarterly national accounts.

For an overview of the development in the GDP of some of our trading partners, please refer to the link to OECD statistics under Additional information.