• Current account surplus is recorded for the fifth year and exports grow 5.1%, the highest rate since 2011
  • All economic growth moves to employment with the creation of 506,000 jobs at the end of the year
  • The unemployment rate will fall to 16.6%, lower by more than 10 points to the maximum of 2013 and the lowest level since the crisis began

The Spanish economy will grow 2.5% in 2017, which will allow the creation of more than half a million jobs and place the unemployment rate at 16.6% at the end of the year. These are the forecasts contained in the macroeconomic table that supports the 2017 State Budget Project approved by the Council of Ministers and thus initiates the parliamentary process. These figures are very prudent and consistent with the achievement of public deficit objectives. This is a more balanced growth, since the contribution of the foreign sector is positive for the second year, with strong export growth. It is also the fifth consecutive year of current account surplus, while maintaining the internal demand thrust.

The macroeconomic picture shows that the economic crisis is falling behind with a growth rate that will allow us to get closer to employment levels before 2009. The forecast of the Government is that this year the Spanish economy will grow at an average annual rate of 2 , 5%, which is the fourth year of positive rates. It is the same 2.5% in which it is estimated will increase employment, which will mean another year, that virtually all economic growth moves to the creation of jobs. These are very conservative forecasts, surpassed by private analysts, and that opt ​​for maximum credibility, as has been the general pattern in recent years.

In 2017, steps are also taken in the direction of consolidating a more balanced and sustainable economic growth model. The contribution of the national demand is reduced to 2.1 points (2.8 in 2016), with a private consumption growth of 2.6%, while that of the Public Administrations remains at 0.8%. The investment grows 2.6%, more strongly than the one destined for capital goods (3.5%) than the construction (it is maintained at 1.9%). External demand contributes to growth for the second consecutive year (0.4 points in 2017), thanks to the pull of exports, which grew 5.1%, the highest rate since 2011. Imports increase, below, 4 ,3%. For the fifth consecutive year, the Spanish economy will register a current account surplus (1.9% in 2017). This indicates that the Spanish economy continues to gain competitiveness, in a context of economic recovery.

The expected increase in private consumption is based on the improvement of confidence in the evolution of the Spanish economy and the creation of employment, which will boost the disposable income of families. In terms of national accounting, employment will grow 2.5% and the unemployment rate will drop to 17.5% of the active population (full-time equivalent jobs, on an annual average). In terms of EPA (Active Population Survey), it is expected that in the fourth quarter of this year 19,014 million employed persons will have been reached, after increasing by 506,000 compared to the same period of the previous year. If this rate is maintained, the level of pre-crisis employment will be recovered at the end of 2019. The unemployment rate drops to 16.6% at the end of 2017, lower by more than 10 points to the maximum reached four years ago (first quarter of 2013) and the lowest rate since 2008.

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