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In 2014 Q1, French GDP held steady

Quarterly national accounts - First results Q1 2014

In Q1 2014*, French gross domestic product (GDP) in volume** levelled off (0.0%) after a small increase in Q4 (+0.2%).

In the three first months of 2014, household consumption expenditure decreased (–0.5% after +0.2%) and the gross fixed capital formation (GFCF) declined more sharply (–0.9% after –0.1%). Overall, total domestic demand (excluding changes in inventories) dropped and contributed negatively to activity (–0.4 points after +0.2 points in Q4).

Imports accelerated (+1.0% after +0.5%), while exports slowed (+0.3% after +1.6%). Consequently, the foreign trade balance contributed negatively to GDP change (–0.2 points after +0.3 points in Q4). On the contrary, changes in inventories contribued positively (+0.6 points after –0.3 points the previous quarter).

Total production edged up

In Q1 2014, total production in goods and services increased by 0.2%, on the same trend as in Q4 2013. Output in the manufactured goods recovered (+1.0% after 0.0%), notably in « coke and refined petroleum ». At the same time, production in tradable services was slightly up (+0.3% after +0.4%). However construction declined (–1.5% after –0.3%). Similarly, production in « energy, water and waste » decreased again because of low heating expenditure.

Household consumption stepped this quarter

In Q1 2014, household consumption expenditure declined (–0.5% after +0.2%). Expenditure on food products fell (–0.9% after +0.8%), in particular on tobacco after the price increase in January. Total expenditure on energy declined for the third consecutive quarter, due to temperatures above their seasonal average. Similarly,

GDP and its main components

GDP and its main components
Goods and services:
percentage change from previous period,working-day and seasonally adjusted data
2013 Q2 2013 Q3 2013 Q4 2014 Q1 2013 2014 (ovhg)
GDP 0.6 -0.1 0.2 0.0 0.4 0.3
Imports 1.7 1.2 0.5 1.0 1.9 2.3
Household consumption *expenditure 0.2 -0.1 0.2 -0.5 0.3 -0.3
General government's *consumption expenditure 0.8 0.3 0.5 0.4 2.0 1.2
GFCF 0.2 -0.2 -0.1 -0.9 -0.8 -1.1
*of which Non financial corporated and unincorporated enterprises 0.5 0.2 0.8 -0.5 -0.6 0.3
Households -0.5 -1.7 -2.2 -2.6 -3.1 -5.2
General government 0.1 0.6 -0.3 -0.2 1.1 -0.1
Exports 2.7 -0.4 1.6 0.3 2.4 2.0
Contributions :        
Internal demand excluding inventory changes 0.4 0.0 0.2 -0.4 0.5 -0.1
Inventory changes 0.0 0.4 -0.3 0.6 -0.2 0.5
Net foreign trade 0.2 -0.5 0.3 -0.2 0.1 -0.1
Sectoral accounts
percentage change from previous period,working-day and seasonally adjusted data
*NFC: non-financial corporations
2013 Q2 2013 Q3 2013 Q4 2014 Q1 2013 2014 (ovhg)
Profit ratio of NFC* (level) 30.1 29.5 29.5   29.8  
Household purchasing power 0.3 -0.2 -0.3   0.0 -0.2
Production, Consumption and GFCF: main components
level, data WDA-SA
2013 Q2 2013 Q3 2013 Q4 2014 Q1 2013 2014 (ovhg)
Production of branches 0.9 -0.2 0.2 0.2 0.5 0.5
Goods 1.5 -1.2 -0.3 0.5 -0.2 0.0
Manufactured Industry 1.7 -1.2 0.0 1.0 -0.6 0.8
Construction 0.4 -0.5 -0.3 -1.5 -1.2 -1.8
Market services 0.7 0.2 0.4 0.3 0.9 0.9
Non-market services 0.7 0.2 0.4 0.5 1.5 1.0
Household consumption 0.2 -0.1 0.2 -0.5 0.3 -0.3
Food products -0.8 0.3 0.8 -0.9 0.1 -0.3
Énergy 0.8 -3.5 -1.5 -3.8 0.8 -6.4
Engineered goods -0.1 0.7 1.3 0.0 -1.0 1.3
Services 0.4 0.1 0.1 0.2 0.6 0.4
GFCF 0.2 -0.2 -0.1 -0.9 -0.8 -1.1
Manufactured goods -0.7 1.2 0.4 -0.4 -0.9 0.3
Construction 0.0 -0.8 -0.7 -1.8 -1.6 -2.7
Services 0.9 -0.3 0.4 0.1 0.3 0.5
Households’ disposable income and ratios of households’ account
percentage change from previous period,working-day and seasonally adjusted data
*cu: consumption unit
2013 Q2 2013 Q3 2013 Q4 2014 Q1 2013 2014 (ovhg)
HDI 0.3 0.0 -0.2   0.6 -0.1
Household purchasing power 0.3 -0.2 -0.3 0.0 -0.2
HDI by cu* (purchasing power) 0.2 -0.4 -0.4 -0.6 -0.5
Adjusted HDI (purchasing power) 0.4 -0.1 -0.1 0.5 0.0
Saving rate (level) 15.2 15.1 14.7 15.1  
Financial saving rate (level) 5.9 6.0 5.6   5.8  
Ratios of non-financial corporations’ account
percentage change from previous period,working-day and seasonally adjusted data
2013 Q2 2013 Q3 2013 Q4 2014 Q1 2013
Profit share 30,1 29,5 29,5   29,8
Investment ratio 22,5 22,6 22,7   22,6
Savings ratio 17,4 16,7 17,3   17,1
Self-financing ratio 77,5 73,7 76,3   75,7
Expenditure, revenue and net borrowing of public administrations
level, data WDA-SA
2013 Q2 2013 Q3 2013 Q4 2014 Q1 2013
In billions of euros      
Total expenditure 300.3 303.5 305.5   1208.3
Total revenue 278.5 281.1 282.6   1118.7
Net lending (+) or borrowing (-) -21.8 -22.4 -22.9   -89.6
In % of GDP      
Net lending (+) or borrowing (-) -4,1 -4,2 -4,3   -4,2

car purchases dropped in Q1 2014 (-1.3%) after a dynamic Q4 2013 (+2.5%), as households anticipated a strenghtening of taxes on the purchase of cars from January 1st. Furthermore expenditure on services remained sluggish (+0.2% after +0.1%).

GFCF declined again

Total GFCF decreased in Q1, for the third consecutive quarter (–0.9% after –0.1% and –0.2%). In particular, investment in construction declined more sharply (–1.8% after –0.7%) and that in manufactured goods dipped (–0.4% after +0.4%). Expenditure on tradable services were contrasted : climbing in information and communication, but sliding in business services.

Exports slowed

In Q1 2014, exports decelerated (+0.3% after +1.6%), especially in manufactured goods (+0.4% after +1.8%). The slowdown resulted notably from the downturn in transport equipment (–1.0% after +3.9%). At the same time imports accelerated slightly (+1.0% after +0.5% at the end of 2013), in goods as in services. Thus foreign trade weighed down on GDP change this quarter : –0.2 points after +0.3 points.

Changes in inventories contributed positively

In Q1, changes in inventories contributed positively to GDP change : +0.6 points after –0.3 points at the end of 2013. This concerned particularly the coke and refined petroleum.

GDP growth, now estimated in “base 2010” is revised

Revisions are larger this quarter than the previous publications, but their magnitude is typical of the first quarter. They come from the benchmarking on annual account in year 2011 to 2013 and from the reestimation of calendar and seasonal adjustment models.

Furthermore, quarterly and annual national accounts switched to 2010 as the reference year (see File on insee.fr (in French) : « GDP level is reviewed by +3.2% in base 2010 »). If the level of the main aggregates has been significantly reviewed, revisions of quarter-on-quarter GDP growth are relatively small comparatively to the previous changes of base year. In Q4 2013, GDP increase is thus slightly reduced (–0.1 points to +0.2%).

Informations Rapides

n° 112 - December 30, 1899

Quarterly national accounts - preliminary figures - 1st quarter 2014

Next issue August 14, 2014 07:30 - 2nd Quarter 2014

For further information

  • Historical data are available on the BDM: G1540, G1548.

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Since July 2009, display of the Informations Rapides has changed.