Macro roundup: Industrial production grinds higher
Electricity supply drove index, but manufacturing output dropped on monthly basis
This has been a quiet week for Greek economic data releases, with the main headline being December’s industrial production figures, which recorded an 8.1 percent increase compared with a year earlier, down slightly from 8.4 percent in November.
The main driver for December’s increase was electricity, which rose 17.4 percent, while manufacturing was up 5.6 percent. The seasonally-adjusted manufacturing index was 8.2 percent higher at the end of last year than it was in February 2020, just before the start of the pandemic.
However, on a monthly basis, the manufacturing index dropped 2.8 percent compared with November, the first decrease since August and the biggest monthly decline since April 2020. (Overall industrial production edged up 0.1 percent, thanks solely to increased electricity supply.)
Given the extent to which higher inflation is currently the dominant theme in macroeconomics, recently I’ve been keeping a closer eye on industrial turnover than I used to. The December figures won’t come out until next week, but it’s already visible in the November data that turnover is rising more rapidly than production as producers pass on higher input costs. In December, industrial revenue was 31.3 percent higher than it was in February 2020.
Since there wasn’t a separate standalone piece this week, I offer this instead: from the YouTube archive, a commercial from 1989 selling Greek T-bills to retail investors. At 22.5 percent interest! Mind you, the average rate of inflation the following year was 20.4 percent.
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Next week’s key releases
Tuesday, Feb. 15:
January consumer price index (Elstat)
January central government budget execution (Finance Ministry)
Wednesday, Feb. 16:
January unemployment (Elstat)
Friday, Feb. 18:
December industrial turnover (Elstat)
Elsewhere on the web
Maria Demertzis argues that the EU needs a new treaty to tackle climate change.
Greece’s fledgeling tech sector starts to take off.
Nektaria Stamouli reports on Greece’s increasing closeness to the United States, at the expense of Russia.
The first ever photograph of the Acropolis dated to 1839.
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