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Sharp monthly drop in December industrial output takes analysts by surprise

A sharp, almost 12% month-on-month decline in Hungary's industrial output in December was unexpected, analysts told MTI.

December output dropped from a seasonally and workday-adjusted 11.8% in November following a rise of 4.3% in the latter month. The twelve-month increase slowed to an unadjusted 8.5% and an unadjusted 6% from a 14.5% rise in November.

Analysts had expected industrial output growth to continue in December, and the decline probably stemmed from a one-off factor, both Zoltán Árokszállási of Erste Bank and Gergely Suppan of Takarékbank told MTI.

The precise reasons for the unexpected decrease in December industrial output will become apparent following the publication of detailed data on February 15, the analysts said.

Suppan noted that output declined after an extraordinarily big rise in November, but this still did not justify the size of the December monthly drop.

Árokszállási remarked that the disappointing numbers suggest that Hungary's December export surplus as well as fourth-quarter GDP growth may also be lower than expected. (MTI – Econews)