Eurozone 4Q GDP Declines by 0.7% Q/Q and 4.9% Y/Y; 2020 at -6.6%

9 March 2021

By David Barwick – FRANKFURT (Econostream) – Seasonally adjusted Eurozone GDP declined by 0.7% on the quarter and 4.9% on the year in 4Q of 2020, leading to a 6.6% drop for the year as a whole, EU stats office Eurostat reported on Tuesday.

On a quarterly basis, the 4Q outcome confirmed the flash figure released a month ago. On the year, today’s result represented a slight improvement from the preliminary number, which Eurostat had estimated at -5.1%.

Though steep, expectations a month ago had generally been of a somewhat more severe contraction.

According to Eurostat, household final consumption expenditure in the euro area was down by 3.0% in 4Q, for a -1.6 point contribution to GDP growth, while gross fixed capital formation rose by 1.6% and contributed 0.3 point. Exports climbed 3.5% and imports 4.1%, leading to a ‘slightly negative’ impact on growth from the external balance. Government final expenditure made a ‘slightly positive’ contribution.

Among individual member states of the Eurozone, Malta (3.8%) recorded the sharpest q/q rise in output, followed by Greece (2.7%). The worst declines were in Ireland (-5.1%) and Austria (-2.7%) , followed by Italy (-1.9%) and France (-1.4%).