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Industrial output growth better than expected in February

In February 2019, the volume of industrial output grew by 5.9% year-on-year, with the working day-adjusted index being equal to the non-adjusted figure, according to a first estimate of monthly data from the Central Statistical Office (KSH).

The majority of manufacturing subsections contributed to the increase. The rate of growth accelerated in the manufacture of transport equipment, which represents the largest weight, as well as in the output of computer, electronic and optical products. The manufacture of food products, beverages and tobacco rose similarly to the industrial average.

Year-on-year, output grew 5.2% in the first two months of this year.

Industrial output in February – according to seasonally and working day -adjusted indices – was 1.0% above the level of the previous month.

Analysts interviewed by state news agency MTI said Hungarian industryʼs performance surpassed expectations in February, suggesting greater than expected resilience against a deteriorating outlook on export markets.

Dávid Németh of K&H Bank attributed the recent acceleration to new capacities added in the sector, forecasting industrial output growth of between 4% and 5% in 2019, but closer to 5% because of the strong start to the year.

Gergely Suppan of TakarékBank attributed the acceleration in vehicle manufacturing to Audiʼs plant in Győr likely making up for output lost due to a strike in January. The bankʼs analysts project 5.5% output growth in the sector this year, compared to 3.6% in 2018.

A second, more detailed estimate of industrial production in February will be published on April 12.