“In the fourth week of March, the daily economic activity indicator (DEI) registered a year-on-year change much higher than that of the previous week”, writes the BdP, in a note published on its website.
After having returned to positive ground in the week centered on March 18 – after a year of negative values - DEI returns to have a strong recovery.
According to data from the central bank, the weekly moving average of this indicator, in the week centered on March 25, points to an annual growth of 25.2% in economic activity. This was when the same moving average for the week centered on March 18 signaled an increase of 1.5% year on year and in the week before (week centered on March 11) a decrease of 10.8%.
Explanation? This evolution “reflects the sharp deterioration of the indicators in the same period of 2020, at the time of the first state of emergency, accentuating the evolution in year-on-year terms”, emphasizes the BdP. It is recalled that in the same period last year the country was in general confinement and economic activity plummeted.
In addition, “this recovery is also reinforced by the current phase of deflation”, which stimulates economic activity, points out the BdP.
“In order to mitigate the influence in the economic analysis of this very marked base effect, the biennial rate is calculated, which corresponds to accumulating the rates of change of the DEI, on homologous days, for two consecutive years”, writes the BdP.
This biennial rate, in terms of weekly moving average, indicates a year-on-year growth of 2.3% in the fourth week of March.
DEI summarizes a set of information of a quantitative nature and daily frequency, such as road traffic of heavy commercial vehicles on highways, consumption of electricity and natural gas, cargo and mail landed at national airports and purchases made with cards in Portugal by residents and non-residents. Therefore, it allows to draw, in real time, a picture of the evolution of economic activity in the country.
The updated data are released weekly by the Bank of Portugal, on Thursday, with information until the preceding Sunday. The information provided refers to the daily values and the weekly moving average of this indicator.
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