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Latviaʼs economy shrinks in Q1

Analysis

Latvia’s economy shrank 1.5% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2020, revised from a preliminary estimate of a 1.4% decline and after expanding 1% in the previous period, figures from the Riga-based Central Statistical Bureau (CSB) show.

It was the first contraction since Q4 2010, as the coronavirus pandemic began to hit the economy. Output dropped in manufacturing (-1.2%); transport and storage (-9.6%); accommodation and catering services (-6.8%); information and communication (-6.3%); and financial and insurance activities (-4.6%).

On the expenditure side, household consumption shrank by 4.5%, while government spending grew by 3.2% and gross fixed capital increased by 5.7%. In the meantime, exports of goods and services rose 3% while imports advanced at a faster 3.5%.

On a quarterly seasonally adjusted basis, the economy shrank 2.9%, the sharpest contraction since Q3 2009, following a 0.1% expansion in the prior period, CSB said on May 29.

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