French Gross Domestic Product Rises 0.2% in Q3

In Q3 of 2012, French gross domestic product (GDP) in volume terms increased by 0.2% after a 0.1% decrease over the previous quarter.

Household consumption expenditure recovered marginally 0.3% after –0.2% last quarter, while gross fixed capital formation slightly decreased 0.2%. Overall, total domestic demand (excluding inventory changes) contributed positively to GDP growth driving it on for 0.2 point of growth after 0.1 percentage point in Q2. Exports slightly accelerated (+0.5% after +0.3%) whereas imports fell as repercussions of a dynamic second quarter (–0.6% after +1.6%). Hence, the foreign trade balance contributed positively to GDP growth: +0.3 percentage point after –0.4 percentage point. This contribution is compensated by changes in inventories which contributed –0.3 percentage point to GDP growth.

After five quarters of near stagnation, production of goods and services increased anew (+0.4%). Production in manufactured goods rose by 1.0% thanks to the upturn of production in transport equipment (+3.2% after –3.2%) and in coke and refined petroleum (+5.5% after –2.0%). Moreover, production in services slightly accelerated (+0.4% after +0.2%). However, production in construction slowed down (+0.1% after +0.5%) and production in energy, water and waste stepped back (–1.4% after +2.2%).
Household consumption expenditure increased by 0.3% in 2012 Q3 after a 0.2% dip in Q2. Food expenditure increased (+0.7% after –1.2%), so did clothing expenditure (+3.9% after –5.9%). On the contrary, consumption of energy fell as repercussions of low temperatures in Spring (–2.5% after +3.0%). Expenditures in services slightly increased (+0.2% after –0.1%).
Changes in inventories contributed –0.3 percentage point to GDP growth this quarter. Much of this contribution is imputable to transport equipment (contribution of –0.5 point). For these products, changes in inventory compensated the effects of the foreign trade.

INSEE | Nuno Fontes |
12/11/2012 3:27:20 PM