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Investment volume down 3.6% yr/yr in Q2

Investment volume in Hungary fell 3.6% year-on-year to Ft 996.266 billion at current prices in the second quarter of 2006, preliminary figures published by the Central Statistics Office (KSH) on Thursday show.

Housing and motorway investments fell after rapid rises a year before, KSH noted. Manufacturing investments also fell, however, and were down for the second quarter in a row. Seasonally adjusted investment volume fell 0.1% year-on-year in Q2 2006. Compared to the previous quarter, seasonally adjusted investment volume rose 1.5%. In the first half of 2006, investment volume rose 1.8% year-on-year to Ft 1,774.745 billion. In 2005, investment volume increased 6.4%, slowing from a 7.8% rise in 2004.
In Q2 2006, construction investments fell 6.8% year-on-year, while machinery investments rose 1.9%. First-half construction investments, however, were up 2.6% year-on-year and machinery investments rose 2.7%.
Among Hungary's biggest sectors, second-quarter investments in the business and real estate services sector, which includes housing investments, fell a sharp 9.4% year-on-year. Part of the reason for the decline was a high base: investments were up 5.2% year-on-year in Q2 2005. In the first quarter of 2006, investments in the sector grew 4.8% year-on-year, resulting in a H1 fall of 3.7%.
Second-quarter investments in the transport, storage, postal services and telecommunications sector fell 7%, mainly because of a drop in motorway construction volume. In the previous quarter, investment volume in the sector jumped 52.1% year-on-year, and in Q2 2005, investments rose a marked 40.9% year-on-year. H1 2006 investments in the sector were still up 18.0% year-on-year. In the manufacturing sector, investments fell 5.5% year-on-year in Q2 2006, after declining 9.3% year-on-year in the previous quarter, or a combined fall of 7.1% in H1. Investments in the sector were up 8.3% year-on-year in Q2 2005 and rose only 2.4% in the whole of 2005 after a steep 15.3% rise in 2004.
Trade sector investments were down 9.6% from a year earlier in Q2, resulting in a slight year-on-year fall in the first half, after a 11.3% rise in 2005. Investments in the electricity, gas, steam and water supply sector fell 8.2% year-on-year in Q2 alone and were down almost 10% in H1, after drops experienced in the past two years.
Among Hungary's smaller sectors, investments increased a marked 47.2% in the public administration sector, after a similar increase in Q1, largely due to flood-related investments, KSH said. Investments in the sector were down 1.6% in 2005. Investments in the education sector were up 18.9% year-on-year in Q2 from a low base after leveling out in Q1, because of renovations and expansions at university buildings. Education investments rose an overall 15.6% last year. Investments in the hotel and catering sector rose 18.2% year-on-year in Q2 after expanding 30.7% in Q1, boosted by hotel constructions. Agriculture investments in Q2 were up 8.3% after a steep 19.3% fall in the first quarter, mainly because of a rise in subsidies available for machinery purchases.