On the expenditure side, exports of goods jumped by 2.6 percent in the second quarter (vs 0.6 percent in Q1), while imports dropped 1.1 percent (vs 2.3 percent in Q1). Meanwhile, exports of services edged up by 0.1 percent (vs -0.6 percent in Q1) and imports increased at a slightly faster 0.2 percent (vs -2.8 percent in Q1).
In addition, household consumption rose by 0.3 percent, easing from a 0.4 percent advance in the previous quarter, in particular due to lower energy consumption because of weather conditions. Investment in construction grew by 0.8 percent (vs 0.2 percent in Q1) while that in equipment and software declined 0.3 percent (vs 1.9 percent in Q1). Government spending increased by 0.1 percent, after being unchanged in the prior quarter.
On the production side, manufacturing provided the most substantial boost to growth in the second quarter (1.5 percent) underpinned by robust foreign demand and the favourable exchange rate movements compared to recent years. Also, energy sector output surged by 4.8 percent thanks to marked growth in energy production from hydropower and nuclear power plants. Within services activities, growth was recorded in: accommodation and food services (1.4 percent); financial and other services (0.4 percent); and the entertainment sector (10.1 percent); the health sector (0.5 percent); and business-related services (0.3 percent). Finally, trade (-0.2 percent) suffered a drop in value added, triggered in particular by sluggish growth in wholesale.
Year-on-year, the GDP grew by 3.4 percent in the second quarter, following an upwardly revised 2.9 percent expansion in the previous period and easily beating forecasts of a 2.4 percent advance. It was the strongest annual expansion since the last quarter of 2010.