Russian GDP grows 4.5% in Q1
MOSCOW. April 28 (Interfax) - Russia's GDP grew 4.5% in the first quarter of 2010 compared with the first quarter of 2009, the Economic Development Ministry said in its economic monitoring report for the quarter.
GDP rose 4.9% in March 2010 compared with the same month in 2009.
Seasonally adjusted GDP rose 0.2% in March compared with February and seasonally adjusted first quarter GDP was 0.6% higher than in the fourth quarter of 2009.
The pace of recovery has slowed in quarter-on-quarter terms, from 2% in the third quarter of 2009 and 1.7% in the fourth quarter.
Economic activity picked up in March following a pause in February, with the construction and processing industries showing seasonally adjusted growth.
Investment activity also resumed growth after three months of steady decline. Investment grew by a seasonally adjusted 1.8% in March compared with February, although investment for the entire first quarter was 1.1% less than in the fourth quarter of 2009, mainly due to a decline in construction activity, which contracted 10.9% in the first quarter. However, construction activity in March was 1.4% higher than in February.
Investment in fixed assets rose 0.7% in March year-on-year. "However, that growth was the result of the steep drop in investment in early 2009," the report says.
Individual incomes declined in March after substantial real growth in December-January. Incomes (seasonally adjusted) declined 2.8% in March compared with February, but rose 2.5% in the first quarter compared with the fourth. Growth was 4.2% in March 2010 compared with March 2009.
Seasonally adjusted retail turnover remained at February's level, but was 2.9% higher than in March 2009. Turnover in the first quarter was 0.8% higher than in the fourth quarter of 2009 and 1.3% higher than in the first quarter last year. "Consumption was higher in the first quarter than in the first quarter of 2008," the report says.
Industrial output remains subject to fluctuation month-to-month. Industrial output rose 0.1% in March compared with February, but was down 0.2% in the first quarter compared with the fourth.
Agricultural output continues it steady growth, rising 4.1% in March compared with growth of 2.5% in March last year.
The Economic Development Ministry officially forecasts GDP to grow 3.1% in 2010 but believes growth of 4%-4.5% is realistic. Analysts told Interfax in a consensus forecast at the end of March that GDP would grow 3.8% in 2010.