Jamaica’s growth rate up 21%

The hotel and restaurant sector was a major contributor the 2019 Q1 growth.

The Jamaican economy is growing at a faster pace in 2019 than it did in the 2018 first quarter, data released by the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) shows.
In the first quarter of 2017, growth was just 0.3 percent and for 2016 helped by election spending, it was up 0.9 percent. According to Statin the economy grew 21 percent faster than it did in the similar quarter of 2018, moving from a growth rate of just 1.4 percent to 1.7 percent in the 2019 March quarter. The stronger growth came about even as Statin reported that production in the Manufacturing sector declined.
The increase was positively impact by an 11.1 percent Mining and Quarrying and Hotels & Restaurants sector rising a strong 7.3 percent, the fastest pace since it grew 9 percent in the first quarter of 2008.
“This increase was due to growth in both the Services Industries and the Goods Producing Industries of 1.8 percent and 1.7 percent respectively,” Statin reported. “All industries within the Goods Producing industries recorded higher levels of output with the exception of the Manufacturing industry which decreased by 1.4 percent,” Statin went on to say. “Increased outputs were recorded for Agriculture,

The mining sector boost GDP growth strongly in Q1 2019.

Forestry & Fishing (0.3 percent), and Construction (3.4 percent). Growth in the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing industry was largely due to higher output levels recorded in the Other Agricultural Crops sub-industry, which includes Animal Farming, Forestry and Fishing of 2.1 percent.
Growth was achieved in all eight (8) of the Services Industries: Electricity & Water Supply (1.9 percent) Wholesale & Retail Trade; Repairs; Installation of Machinery & Equipment (1.3 percent),Transport, Storage & Communication (1.2 percent), Finance & Insurance Services (2.5 percent), Real Estate, Renting & Business Activities 1.0 percent), Producers of Government Services (0.2 percent) and Other Services (1.8 percent).

Jamaica’s April inflation tame

Monthly inflation figures returns well below the 2 percent per annum level in April according to data put out by the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) today.
According to Statin, the All Jamaica Consumer Price Index recorded an inflation rate of 0.1 percent in April 2019. the inflation for April comes against a rise of inflation in march to 0.8 percent.
This movement in April was mainly attributable to a 0.5 percent increase in the index for Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages. The two groups within this division Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages recorded increases of 0.5 percent and 0.3 percent respectively. Transport division, rose by 0.4 percent due to the rise in petrol prices and its related products. The overall movement was tempered by a 1.5 percent decline in the index for the Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas, and Other Fuels division resulting from lower rates for electricity, water and sewage. The calendar year-to-date inflation movement is 0.8 percent, while inflation over the past twelve months comes out at 3.9 percent and the fiscal year-to-date is a low 0.1 percent with just one month having elapsed.

Jamaican economy grew 2% in 2018

Mining was the biggest contributer to GDP gains in 2019

Preliminary estimates by the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (Statin) puts growth in the Jamaican economy for the 2018 at 1.9 percent, the highest in 11 years bettering 1.7 percent achieved in 2011 and almost twice the one percent rise in 2017.
The increase is “due to a 5 percent growth in the Goods Producing Industries and a 0.8 percent increase in Services Industries,” Statin stated.
The fourth quarter last year, grew 2 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2017. This growth is due to increases in both the Services Industries and the Goods Producing Industries of 1 percent and 4.9 percent respectively.
For the full year, growth occurred in all the Goods Producing Industries: Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing up 3.1 percent, Mining & Quarrying up a strong 25 percent mainly due to the reopening of Jiuquan Iron and Steel Company, Alpart refinery, manufacturing a moderate 2 percent and Construction up 3.7 percent.
For the first quarter of 2019, GDP is expected to accelerate at a faster pace than for 2018 and will be strongly, impacted by a surge in tourism stopover arrivals that is up in double digits for the first quarter.

More females employed

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Females accounted for 7,600 persons of the 7,800 persons between October 2017 and October 2018 to 261,800 persons employed as ‘Professionals, Senior Officials and Technicians’ that had the second largest increase in employment in the period in Jamaica, data from Statistical Institute of Jamaica (Statin) reported today.
The largest change in employment by industry group was in ‘Real Estate, Renting & Business Activities’ with an increase of 9,700 persons, (11.9 percent) moving from 81,700 in October 2017 to 91,400 in October 2018. Employment, however, decreased in ‘Transport, Storage and Communication’ by 7,500 persons (9.4 percent) to 72,000 over the same period.
Statin stated, “the unemployment rate was 8.7 percent in October last year and represented a reduction of 1.8 percentage points relative to 10.5 percent in October 2017”. There was an increase in the number of persons employed, particularly females in the industry group ‘Real Estate, Renting & Business Activities’
The Employed Labour Force for October 2018 was 1,219,700, 14,400 or 1.2 percent higher than in October 2017.

Prices in Jamaica plunged for December

Prices in Jamaica on average, fell sharply by 1 percent in December last, bringing inflation as measured by the country’s Consumer Price Index to 2.4 percent for the calendar year. The fall in inflation for December occurred across several main categories of goods and services.
The movement in the index for the fiscal year-to-date was 2.7 percent. The rate of increase on average is well below the target set by the government for the central bank to aim at, for the fiscal year of 4 to 6 percent. Had it not been for a spike in the rate of exchange between April and September last year, the rate for the year would have been even lower than the final numbers reported.
Food and Non Alcoholic Beverages and the Transport division declined by 1.5 percent. The fall in Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages resulted from a decline of 6.2 percent in Vegetables, Starchy Foods due to increased supplies of agricultural produce the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) stated. The decrease in the Transport was due to lower prices for petrol, while Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels fell by 1.3 percent, due mainly to reduced rates for electricity, sewage and water rates.

Jamaica’s growth crawls along at 1.8% PA

Construction secrtor contributed to increased growth in Q3.

Economic growth in the Jamaican grew 1.8 percent in the third quarter of 2018 over the similar quarter of 2017. The performance result in gains in the Goods Producing and the Services Industries.
The goods producing sector grew by a strong 5.1 percent but the services sector was up just 0.7 percent over the similar period in 2017, the report from the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (Statin) stated in their release on the performance on the local economy for the third quarter of the year.
According to Statin, all industries within the Services Industries recorded higher levels of output with the exception of Electricity & Water Supply which declined by 0.1 percent and the Producers of Government Services which remained unchanged for the period. Increases were recorded for: Wholesale & Retail Trade; Repairs; Installation of Machinery & Equipment (0.8 percent ), Hotels & Restaurants (2.1 percent ), Transport, Storage & Communication (1.4 percent ), Finance & Insurance Services (0.7 percent ), Real Estate, Renting & Business Activities (0.5 percent ) and Other Services (1.2 percent ).

Mining was the biggest contributer to GDP gains in Q3.

Hotels & other short-stay accommodation benefited from a 3.8 percent increase in foreign national arrivals, the report stated. The Goods Producing Industries grew due to increased output in Mining & Quarrying, up 51 percent due mainly to the reopening of Alpart refinery and Construction up by 3.7 percent due to increased activities in the civil engineering sub-group. The major contributor to this growth was work associated with the continued expansion of road infrastructure. However, Manufacturing declined by 0.3 percent due mainly to lower production levels, in petroleum refining and non-metallic minerals. Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing remained unchanged. The growth for the third quarter brings real growth for the year to September to 1.8 percent over 2017. Gross domestic product for the calendar year, grew 0.9 percent in 2015, 1.4 percent in 2016 and 1 percent in 2017.

Inflation moderates in October

Prices in Jamaica increased in October but at a slightly slower pace than in September according to the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) in a release today.
“The All Jamaica Consumer Price Index for October recorded an inflation rate of 0.7 percent”, the report from Statin said, down from 1.1 percent in September. The movement in the October CPI was influenced by a 1.7 percent increase, for Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages. Prices for vegetables and starchy foods resulting in the group Food moving upwards by 1.8 percent. The Transport division increased by 0.5 percent as a result of an increase in the price for petrol and air travel.
The increases were tempered by a 1.3 percent decline in the division Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels due mainly to reduced rates for electricity despite the increased rates for water and sewage, the Statin report stated. The index

Crude price in sharp fall coupled with J$ appreciation to create negative inflation ahead.

for the group Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels fell by 2.5 percent while, the group Water Supply and Miscellaneous Services Related to Dwelling advanced by 0.5 percent.
The calendar year-to-date inflation was 3.5 percent while the movement in the index for the fiscal year-to-date was 3.8 percent with inflation over the last 12 months being 4.7 percent.
The higher inflation rate came as a result of the rate of exchange of the Jamaican dollar sliding from around $125 to one US dollar in May to a low of $137.95, that would have helped to push up the prices of imported items and petroleum and spiked inflation that ran at a negative rate up to May. Since October when the survey would have been done, the rate of exchange for the Jamaican dollar appreciated J$132.17 to the US dollar and since then appreciated further to J$126.58 to the US dollar and seems set to enjoy further appreciation.

Employment jumps 10,700 for 2018

Employment in Jamaica jumped by 10,700 persons since the start of 2018, to 1,217,300 persons in April, and 14,700 more than the 1,202,600 recorded in April last year.
A total of 1,206,600 persons, were employed, in January 2018 this year data out of the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (Statin)shows.
The effect of the increase in the number of persons employed, is that the unemployment rate fell to 9.7 percent In April, compared to 12.2 percent in April 2017, but inched up slightly from the 9.6 percent recorded in January, this year.
“Among major occupation groups, the largest increase in the Employed Labour Force between April 2017 and April 2018 occurred in ‘Elementary Occupations’. This occupation group includes, among other jobs, car washers, street vendors and housekeepers in hotels. There were 174,900 persons employed in this occupation group in April 2018, an increase of 13,200 or 8.2 percent when compared with April 2017,” the Statin report showed.

Inflation in June but deflation intact

Jamaica recorded an increase of 0.4 percent inflation for June, leaving country still in deflation for the year to June at negative 0.3 percent and inflation for the last twelve months to 2.8 percent.
“Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels, moved up by 1.2 percent, an upward movement in the rate for electricity resulted in the group ‘Electricity, Gas, and Other Fuels increasing by 2 percent.

The price of electricity helped spike inflation in June.

While Water Supply and Miscellaneous Services Related to the Dwelling increased by 0.8 percent as a result of higher water and sewage rates. Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages rose 0.3 percent due to an increase of 0.7 per cent in the class ‘Vegetables and Starchy Foods. Higher prices were recorded for produce such as Irish potato, yam, carrot, lettuce and onion during the month under review” the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) indicated. Transport recorded an increase of 0.8 percent for the period, mainly due to increased prices for petrol the STATIN concluded.

Deflation for Jamaica’s Q1

Prices declined for another month in Jamaica, according to data just released by the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) but prices are still high than a year ago.
Statin stated that the All Jamaica Consumer Price Index declined for the second consecutive month as a negative 0.1 percent inflation rate was recorded for March 2018. The main contributor to this movement was the 1.0 percent fall in Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages category, due to lower prices for agricultural produce resulting in a 4.3 percent reduction in index for the class Vegetables and Starchy Foods. Transportation recorded a decline of 0.4 percent for the period, resulting from lower fuel prices. Upward movement of a 3.2 percent in Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels, primarily resulting from higher electricity, water and sewage rates help to negate the above mention declines. As at March 2018, the calendar year-to-date inflation was negative 0.2 percent and the movement in the index for the last twelve months is 3.9 percent.