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GDP growth accelerates to 5% in Q3

Hungaryʼs GDP rose 5% year-on-year in the third quarter of 2019, state news wire MTI reports, citing a first reading of data by the Central Statistical Agency (KSH).

Growth accelerated from 4.9% in Q2.

KSH said the industrial and construction sectors as well as market-based services contributed the most to growth in Q3.

Adjusted for seasonal and calendar year effects, Q3 GDP growth was 4.8%.

Hungaryʼs GDP rose an unadjusted 5.1% and an adjusted 5% in Q1-Q3 from the same period a year earlier.

Speaking at a press conference after the release of the data, Finance Minister Mihály Varga noted that Hungaryʼs Q3 GDP growth was well over the 1.4% average for EU member states.

He said growth was supported by government measures to boost employment, improve competitiveness, support home construction and better utilize EU funding, as well as by investment incentives.

Varga added that the government is following economic and geopolitical developments in Europe and the rest of the world closely. The minister said that the government has already initiated measures to shield the Hungarian company from their impact. More steps to protect the economy are expected to be taken next spring, he added.

ING Bank chief analyst Péter Virovácz said that, in spite of an expected slowdown in the fourth quarter, Hungaryʼs full-year GDP growth could remain very close to 5%.

Takarékbank senior analyst Gergely Suppan put full-year GDP growth at 4.9%. Next year, growth could slow to 3.7%, he said, but noted that domestic demand presents upside risk for that projection.