• The economy chains four years of growth and will close for the third consecutive year with an increase of more than 3%
  • Employment maintains a high growth rate, with an annual rate of 2.9% in the third quarter
  • The national demand receives a strong impulse and the contribution of the foreign sector is positive for the seventh consecutive quarter
  • Investment, the most dynamic component, registered a growth of 5.4%, the highest rate in seven quarters

The Spanish economy registered a quarterly growth of 0.8% in the third quarter, one tenth less than in the previous quarter, but an increase of 3.1% is maintained in the last twelve months, according to published National Accounts data by the INE. Therefore, the strong momentum of economic activity continues, with an improvement in national demand, as a consequence of the good evolution of investment, while the positive contribution of the foreign sector continues. In addition, a high rate of job creation is maintained, with the sum of more than half a million jobs in the last year, an increase of 2.9%.

With these results, the Spanish economy already has four years of growth, after the recession that began in 2008. With the growth rate recorded in the third quarter, it is more than likely that the economy will close the year with an average rate of 3, 1%, which will comply with the Government's forecasts included in the 2018 Budget Plan sent to Brussels on October 16. In this way, it will be the third consecutive year in which GDP presents an annual increase of more than 3%. Spain, which recovered the previous quarter the level of income prior to the crisis, thus maintains a high differential of growth against the euro zone which, according to the latest Eurostat data, has raised its GDP 0.6% quarter-on-quarter and 2 , 5% annual in the third quarter.

The Spanish economy has internal demand as the main driver (it contributes 2.7 percentage points to annual growth), after registering an advance of four tenths over the previous quarter. The positive contribution of the foreign sector is also maintained for the seventh consecutive quarter, although this is reduced by four tenths in relation to the previous quarter. Household consumption maintains its interannual rate at 2.4% and investment is accelerated, which continues as the most dynamic component, with growth of 5.4%, the highest rate in the last seven quarters. Within the investment, the one destined to capital goods continues being the most expansive component of the national demand, when rising 6.3%, 2.4 percentage points more than in the second quarter. The growth rate of construction investment increases nine tenths, up to 4.9% year-on-year.

The contribution of external demand to the annual growth of GDP is reduced compared to the previous quarter. This is due to an acceleration of imports (1.7 points), higher than that of exports (0.5 points). However, the latter continue to grow at rates (4.9%) higher than our purchases abroad (4%). Among exports, goods accelerate almost two points, from 2.8% to 4.7% in annual rate.

Employment maintained the same growth rate in the third quarter as in the previous quarter, 2.9%. This rate represents the net creation of more than half a million jobs (501,242) in the last year. As a result of a year-on-year increase in GDP slightly higher than that of employment, productivity per employee increases 0.3% year-on-year in the third quarter, one tenth more than in the second quarter, and productivity per hour worked increases 1.4 % compared to the third quarter of 2016, the same rate as the previous quarter. The salary per employee is practically stabilized, recording a year-on-year rate of 0.1%, compared to the 0.2% decrease of the previous quarter, so that unit labor costs are reduced by 0.2%, lower fall by two tenths to the previous quarter.

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