03-04-19 DI Business News

New figures: Significant Danish upswing despite slower international growth

It is pleasing and a bit surprising that Denmark’s economic growth was on the rise at end of 2018, says Morten Granzau, Chief Economist at DI.

Denmark’s economic growth in the fourth quarter of 2018 increased by 0.8 per cent compared to the third quarter, show figures from Statistics Denmark.

The growth rate has increased by 2.6 per cent compared to last year’s fourth quarter. For 2018 as a whole, growth was at 1.4 per cent.

The end-of-year rise was driven by impressive growth in exports. This trend is pleasing and a bit surprising, considering the halt of the German economy and growing international uncertainty. Morten Granzau, Chief Economist at the Confederation of Danish Industry

“2018 turned out to be a rather sluggish year overall with growth of just under 1.5 per cent, due in large part to disappointingly low growth in exports at the beginning of the year. Looking at the year as a whole, growth in exports was just 0.5 per cent,” says Morten Granzau.

Productivity in private urban businesses rose by just 0.6 per cent in 2018, given that value added increased by 2.1 per cent and the total hours worked increased by 1.5 per cent.

Meanwhile, when measured per employee, productivity declined, because the number of hours worked per employee fell in 2018. The fall in work hours in 2018 is partially due to the technicality of more bank holidays falling on weekdays than in 2017.

“Unfortunately, productively increased only very slightly last year in the private sector. Measured per employee, there was an outright fall in productivity. This concerning in terms of the ability of companies to win orders and market shares in declining export markets,” says Morten Granzau.

“Fortunately, signs indicate that productivity increased in the second half of 2018. It was particularly in the beginning of the year that growth was sluggish,” says Morten Granzau.

Morten Granzau Nielsen

Økonomisk politisk chef

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