Irish GDP is now estimated to have increased by an impressive 7.2% in 2017, albeit slightly below the initial estimate of 7.8% growth, according to revised figures for 2017 and initial estimates for Q1 2018 published by KBC Bank.
However, between the final three months of 2017 and the first quarter of 2018, GDP fell by 0.6%, an outturn that seems at odds with most other indicators of current Irish economic conditions.
“Our broad judgement is that the 2017 GDP figure somewhat overstates the true momentum of the Irish economy while the Q1 figure does not adequately reflect sustained if more modest growth in the Irish economy of late,” the financial institution said in a statement.
The group highlighted that the recent data was ‘also surprising in terms of measured developments in consumer spending’.
The report indicated that intense competition across many consumer areas may be reducing prices in a manner that isn’t fully being captured in the national accounts data.
“We reckon that the underlying increase in consumer spending is likely to be running close to the increase in employment which was 2.9% y/y in q1 2018,” KBC outlined.
© 2018 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Donna Ahern. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.