Revised GDP data came out slightly weaker than the first official estimate. Detail breakdown did not bring any surprise, the Czech economy remains supported by rising exports while weak household and government expenditures linger. Household consumption expenditures fell 0.2% qoq and 0.7% yoy. Detailed data revealed that spending on both staples and discretionary consumption goods declined. Finding reasons of this slack is simple: stagnant real wages, too slow improvement of the labor market and declining volume of consumer loans. Government also tries to repair its balance sheet. Its spending decreased by 0.6% qoq and 1.4% yoy. The current main goal of the fiscal policy is to bring down the budget deficit. Thus, central government budget expenditures declined 2.2% in the first half of the year. The second half can be even tougher as the government may be forced to counterpart worse than expected tax revenues. Fixed capital formation rose 2.7% qoq and 3.6% yoy led by investment in machinery. On the other hand, construction activity declined again. Net export s improved as exports rose by 9.4% yoy and imports by 7.9% yoy. The Czech Republic enjoys the fact that it neighbors (from geographic as well as economic point view) with EU countries with a solid GDP growth: Germany, Austria and Slovakia. GDP deceleration reversed the evolution of the output gap. It began to widen again. Implications for the monetary policy are crystal clear: there is no reason to tighten financial conditions. GDP is likely to increase by 1.9% this year according to our forecast. But there is an enormous amount of uncertainty related to the Euro area economy and the debt crisis.
Czech Republic: Gross Domestic Product (%, y/y)