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Industrial output expands at near-record pace in January

Hungary's industrial output achieved a near-record increase in January, rising 14% year on year (or a workday-adjusted 11%), partly due to the low base figure, but mainly because of an 8% rise in domestic sales and a 22% increase in exports, the Central Statistics Office (KSH) said in its monthly summary for January published on Wednesday.

Industrial growth was driven by the machinery sector, with output of the vehicle and vehicle component branch rising a marked 41%. Although the sector's stock of orders increased just 3.5% year on year, new export orders were up 21% and new domestic orders rose 32%. Labor productivity improved 18%, including the effect of a 3.2% fall in the number of jobs at companies with more than five employees.
January construction industry output was further supported by motorway construction, registering a 14% year-on-year expansion following a full-year 17% increase in 2005. The output of the civil engineering branch, which includes road construction, rose 26%, and construction industry orders were up 13%, also the result of road construction.