Greek GDP contraction in H1 was worse than thought

TAGS: Finance

The contraction of the Greek economy in the first half of the year has turned out to be greater than originally estimated. The revised data released on Monday by the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) recorded a bigger drop in gross domestic product on an annual basis, which will make it even more difficult for the government to meet the fiscal targets set for this year.

Using previously unavailable data, ELSTAT has now calculated that first quarter GDP declined by 1 percent and not 0.8 percent year-on-year, while in the April-June period it fell by 0.9 percent and not 0.7 percent as originally thought. That was the fourth consecutive quarter with a GDP contraction.

Consumer spending fell 1.9 percent in the second quarter on an annual basis, exports of goods and services contracted 11.4 percent (with goods increasing 2.98 percent and exports dropping 26.5 percent), while imports declined 7.1 percent. Gross capital investments posted a 7 percent increase.

On a quarterly basis, consumer expenditure dropped 0.2 percent from the first quarter, investment rose 1 percent, exports fell 1 percent and imports shrank 0.4 percent, ELSTAT data showed.

New Democracy financial affairs coordinator Christos Staikouras said on Monday: “The downward revision of the GDP estimate by ELSTAT for the second quarter of 2016 confirms that the Greek economy is crawling into recession, ever deeper, for a fourth quarter in a row. Greece is now the only economy in the European Union to have been in recession over the last year.”