17 Nov 2010 18:39

Russian GDP expands 3.9% in Oct, 3.7% in Jan-Oct - Nabiullina

MOSCOW. Nov 17 (Interfax) - Russia's GDP grew 3.9% year-on-year in October, and 3.7% in January-October, Economic Development Minister Elvira Nabiullina said on Wednesday.

Adjusted for seasonal factors, GDP grew 0.9% in October compared to September, Nabiullina said.

In connection the first Q3 GDP data published by the Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat), the Economic Development Ministry firmed-up the GDP growth evaluation for January-September to 3.6% (from 3.4% in the initial calculations).

Investment in fixed capital, Nabiullina said, grew an annual 10.7% in October and 4.7% in January-October. Adjusted for seasonal factors, investments increased 6.1% in October compared to September.

Retail trade turnover, Nabiullina said, grew 4.4% over the ten months. Adjusted for seasonal factors, that growth was 0.2% in October compared to September.

Investment growth in October proved greater than predicted by analysts surveyed for an Interfax consensus forecast, who were anticipating 7.7% growth. The rapid increase in investing activity that began in August continues - 10.9% in August and 9.4% in September.

Revitalized investment, which is mainly of recovery in nature against a backdrop of a substantial drop last year, has already prompted a rejuvenation in industry (adjusted October industrial output growth, according to the Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat), was 1.5% against September). Nevertheless, industrial output growth in annual terms will slow somewhat in November-December (6.6% in October), but this will in large part be due to the base effect.

The Economic Development Ministry's GDP growth forecast for this year is 4%, though the ministry notes the existence of risk of slowdown also of economic growth by 3.6%-3.7%.

Deputy Economic Development Minister Andrei Klepach told Interfax at the end of October that the ministry forecast was 3.7%-4%, but an estimate of 3.7% looked more realistic at present (if only Rosstat does not revise the quarterly dynamics of the first three quarters upward). The ministry will submit a firmed-up forecast to the government by December 1.

For the Russian economy to end the year having grown 4% (as in the official forecast), Q4 GDP needs to grow more than 5%, which, against a backdrop of a relatively high Q4 2009 base (in Q4 2009, GDP contracted 2.9% after an 8.6% slump the previous quarter) does look fairly optimistic.

An analyst consensus forecast Interfax did in late October produced a GDP growth figure of 3.7%.