Economic growth continued to slow in 2Q

'Indicators for the April- June period point to a continued slowdown in the pace of growth in imports, trade and services revenue, industrial production and credit-card purchases.'

By SHARON WROBEL
July 30, 2010 08:48
2 minute read.
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financial graph 311. (photo credit: stock photo)

Economic growth continued to slow in the second quarter, led by a decline in exports and trade and services revenue, the Central Bureau of Statistics reported Thursday.

“Economic indicators for the April- June period point to a continued slowdown in the pace of growth in imports of raw materials, trade and services revenue, industrial production and credit-card purchases,” the statistics bureau said. “There was also a decline in industrial and goods exports, while exports of services increased and unemployment narrowed.”

Exports of goods, excluding diamonds and ships, fell by an annualized 11 percent in the second quarter, after an increase of 8.3% in the first quarter.

Industrial exports dropped by an annualized 10.8%, led by a decline of 33% in mixed hi-tech exports, following a rise of 7.8% in the first quarter. Hi-tech exports rose 17.2%, and exports of traditional industry goods rose 5.9%.

The index of trade and services revenue increased 4.4% in the second quarter, after rising 8.8% in the first quarter.

Credit-card purchases by consumers increased 5% in March through June, after growing 6.1% in the previous three months.

Supermarket-chain sales rose 3.2% in the second quarter, after rising 3.8% in the first quarter.

“GDP growth, which grew at a revised 3.4% annualized pace in the first quarter from 4.4% in the fourth quarter of 2009, is slowing, with consumer confidence having turned lower for the first time in May and slower tech demand and European growth,” Citigroup said in a report released Wednesday. “We would stress, however, that while growth rates may have rolled over, any slowdown in growth in the second half of 2010 and 2011 is expected to be relatively moderate.”

Citigroup expects the economy to grow 3.2% in 2010 and 4.2% in 2011. The Bank of Israel forecast is for the economy to grow 3.7% in 2010 and 4.0% in 2011.

The number of tourist hotel stays increased 7% in the second quarter, after rising 7.6% in the first quarter. The number of hotel stays by Israelis dropped by 2.5% in the second quarter, after rising 1% in the first quarter.

Exports of services increased 5.1% in seasonally adjusted terms in the second quarter, driven by a rise of 7.2% in exports of business services, after falling 4.2% in the previous two quarters.

The unemployment rate dropped 6.5% in May, after declining 6.6% in April.


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