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Charlotte de Montpellier, economist at ING, notes that the Swiss GDP grew 0.2% QoQ in 4Q18, with growth picking up again, following the 0.3% contraction in GDP in 4Q18.

Key Quotes

“Manufacturing contributed significantly to this result (+ 1.5%), offsetting its very poor Q3 performance. This was particularly thanks to the rise in merchandise exports (+5.6%). At the same time, domestic demand remained weak. While private consumption has picked up somewhat, investments have contracted – a sign of increased uncertainty.”

“Over 2018 as a whole, GDP increased by 2.5%, its best result since 2014. Growth in 2018 was mainly driven by foreign trade.”

“The encouraging 2.5% growth rate in 2018 follows an up-and-down year: with an exceptional first half (with 0.9% and 0.7% QoQ growth in Q1 and Q2) after very good momentum in late 2017 and the second part of 2018 strongly disappointing.”

“The question now is whether in 2019 Switzerland will be able to maintain a growth rate higher than that of the eurozone. We believe that this will be difficult, and expect the Swiss economy to grow at a rate of around 1.2% in 2019.”