Swiss GDP development in the 3rd quarter of 2017

Switzerland’s real gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 0.6 % in the 3rd quarter of 2017,* boosted by manufacturing in particular. Many service sectors also contributed to growth, including trade, business services and healthcare. By contrast, value added fell slightly in construction and the financial sector. On the expenditure side, both domestic final demand and foreign trade underpinned GDP. Consumption, investment in equipment and net exports rose, while investment in construction dipped slightly

Switzerland’s GDP grew by 0.6 % in the 3rd quarter of 2017, stepping up moderately in comparison to the previous quarter (revised +0.4 % as opposed to +0.3 %). On the production side of GDP, growth was broadly based across the sectors.

At +2.2 %, manufacturing provided the most substantial boost to growth, climbing even further than in the previous quarter. Many service sectors experienced a similarly positive development, notably major sectors like trade (+0.6 %) and business services (+0.2 %). After a slight drop in the previous quarter, value added in healthcare (+0.5 %) and public administration (+0.1 %) gathered pace once again. The financial sector (-0.6 %), however, was not able to match its performance in the previous quarter. In construction (-0.6 %), the moderate downward trend of the previous two quarters continued.

On the expenditure side of GDP, domestic final demand once again proved a key pillar of growth in the 3rd quarter. Private consumption (+0.4 %) developed at a similar rate to its long-term average. Growth was broad-based across the segments, with healthcare, housing and energy as well as leisure time and culture providing the greatest impulses. Growth of government consumption (+0.5 %) was average. As for investment in equipment (+0.9 %), the slightly above average rate of expansion in the previous quarter continued, with almost every segment playing a part, particularly investment in machinery and in IT. Investment in construction (-0.1 %), however, dropped slightly after some positive quarters.

The trade balance in goods** and services supported GDP growth in the 3rd quarter, since exports increased and imports decreased. Exports of goods** (+2.1 %) gained considerable, broad-based momentum after a sluggish previous quarter, with exports of chemical and pharmaceutical products, energy, machinery, equipment and electronics as well as trading providing a significant boost to growth. Exports of services (-0.4 %) experienced a slight downturn, however, including in major segments such as financial services and licences and patents. After a very strong performance in the previous quarter, imports of goods** (-1.6 %) dropped due to declining imports of vehicles and chemical and pharmaceutical products. Imports of services (-0.7 %) also decreased slightly, including in the tourism sector.

* Unless stated otherwise, the percentage changes of the previous quarter listed here (not annualised) are calculated on the basis of chained series, price, seasonal and calendar adjusted values.

** Excluding non-monetary gold and valuables.