Source: iStock.com/Tony Tremblay

© iStock.com/Tony Tremblay

According to the Federal Statistical Office [1], the goods-producing sector saw its output fall by 2.5% in January, compared to the preceding month. [2] Whilst industrial output decreased slightly by 0.5%, that of the construction sector clearly fell by 12.2%. The figures for the preceding month in this comparison have been revised upwards overall by the Federal Statistical Office.

This means that the two-month comparison for December/January compared with October/November shows an increase of 1.4% in the output of the goods-producing sector. Industrial output was up 2.1%, and construction sector output up 0.2%. Meanwhile, the automotive sector, a large industrial branch, saw its output reduced by 4.0%.

Despite the measures to combat the pandemic, industrial output in January saw only a mild decrease which was largely caused by bottlenecks in the supply of semiconductor products required by the automotive industry. By contrast, the production of machinery expanded by a significant margin. The construction sector saw its output shrink quite considerably – a development that can probably be partly explained by unfavourable weather conditions. The future outlook for the industrial sector remains neutral for now. Strong foreign demand is currently contrasted with the burden caused by the pandemic. The most recent sentiment indicators signal optimism regarding future developments.

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[1] Press release from the Federal Statistical Office of 8 March 2021.
[2] All figures are based on provisional data and have been adjusted for price, calendar day and seasonal factors (X13 JDemetra+ procedure).