It was the third straight quarter of expansion, as consumer spending advanced 0.4 percent, the same pace as in the previous quarter, and government expenditure grew by 0.3 percent, after contracting by 0.4 percent in the second quarter. As a result, final consumption expenditure grew by 0.4 percent (+0.2 percent in Q2) and contributed with 0.3 p.p. to growth. Also, inventories contributed positively with 0.3 p.p., as they grew for the third consecutive period. By contrast, fixed investment shrank by 0.4 percent (-0.1 percent in Q2) subtracting 0.1 p.p., due to a decline in spending on machinery, equipment and miscellaneous products (-0.9 percent), partially offset by an increase in transportation (+0.4 percent), while investments in construction were unchanged. Meanwhile, net external demand continued to drag the expansion down, subtracting 0.4 p.p., as imports expanded by 0.5 percent while exports shrank by 0.8 percent.
On the production side, the services sector grew 0.1 percent; industrial activities advanced 0.3 percent; and agriculture expanded 2.3 percent.
Year-on-year, the economy advanced 0.8 percent, following 0.6 percent growth in Q2 while staying below preliminary estimates of 0.9 percent. It was the strongest growth since the second quarter of 2011, as final consumption expenditure expanded by 0.9 percent and gross fixed capital formation by 0.9 percent. While imports increased at a faster 5.1 percent compared to a 3.5 percent rise in exports.