Significant economic recovery during summer: +12,0% growth in 3rd quarter

From July to September the Austrian economy increased by 12.0% in real terms compared to April to June (seasonal and working day adjusted). Compared to the 3rd quarter 2019 a decline of 4.0% in real terms was recorded. The temporary easing of measures to contain the COVID pandemic stimulated nearly all industries, private consumption, capital formation as well as foreign trade. However, overall the economy remained below the pre-crisis level. 

Recovery of consumption, capital formation and foreign trade

Consumption of private households showed a substantial growth of 13.3% in real terms compared to the previous quarter. The decline of 5.1% compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019 can be traced back to a still weak demand for services. In contrast, demand for durable consumption goods (in particular furniture) recorded a substantial rebound (+7.7% in real terms compared to the previous year's quarter).

Capital formation in the 3rd quarter increased by 7.9% in real terms compared to the 2nd quarter (-0.7% in real terms compared to the 3rd quarter 2019), thereby offsetting nearly all of the losses of the first half of the year. The upward trend affected all parts of capital formation, in particular capital formation in transport equipment (+17.5% compared to the previous quarter, +6.4% compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019) and in machinery (+14.0% compared to the previous quarter, -3.7% compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019).

The worldwide slowdown in the spread of COVID during summer resulted in a recovery of foreign trade. Austrian exports rose by 16.1% in real terms compared to the 2nd quarter and imports rose by 12.1% during the same period. Still high rates of decline compared to the previous year's quarter are due to restrained cross-border trade of services, particularly in tourism (-8.6% exports, -9.1% imports).  

Surge in growth of services

Nearly all industries recovered during the summer months. Industries, which were mostly affected by the lockdown during the first half of the year recorded remarkable real growth rates from the 2nd to the 3rd quarter. Trade and transportation as well as accommodation and food services grew by 32.9% (-4.5% compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019). Arts, recreation and personal services increased by 39.2%. However, the losses were not fully compensated (-7.7% in real terms compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019). 

Manufacturing also gained momentum during the 3rd quarter of 2020 (+15.7% in real terms compared to the previous quarter, -4.0% in real terms compared to the previous year's quarter). Construction recorded real growth of 10.1% compared to the previous quarter and thereby reached pre-crisis levels (+0.2% in real terms compared to the previous year's quarter). 

Industries, which were rarely affected by the lockdown, such as real estate activities, public administration and health services remained overall stable. (Real estate activities: -0.4% in real terms compared to the 2nd quarter and +1.5% in real terms compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019, public administration and health services: +0.5% in real terms compared to the 2nd quarter and +0.6% in real terms compared to the 3rd quarter of 2019).

GDP by industry according to ESA 2010 – seasonally and calendar adjusted
GDP by industry according to ESA 2010 – unadjusted
GDP income approach according to ESA 2010 – adjusted
GDP income approach according to ESA 2010 – unadjusted
GDP expenditure approach according to ESA 2010 – seasonally and calendar adjusted
GDP expenditure approach according to ESA 2010 – unadjusted
Labour inputs
Employment by industry (persons)
Unit labour cost, labour productivity


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