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Latvia’s Economy Grows at EU’s Fastest Pace, Exceeds Forecasts

Latvia’s economy expanded at the quickest pace in the European Union in the third quarter, fueled by trade, manufacturing and construction.

Gross domestic product grew a preliminary 5.3 percent from a year earlier compared with a revised 5 percent advance in the second quarter, the statistics office, based in the capital, Riga, said today by e-mail. That’s more than the 4.5 percent median estimate of eight economists in a Bloomberg survey. GDP rose 1.7 percent from the previous quarter.

Latvia is rebounding from the world’s deepest recession in 2008-2009, which erased almost a quarter of economic output after a property bubble bust and credit inflows dried up, prompting an International Monetary Fund bailout. GDP will advance 4.3 percent this year, the fastest pace in the 27-member EU, buoyed by exports and domestic demand, the European Commission said Nov. 7.

Manufacturing and trade grew 7 percent from a year earlier between July and September while construction expanded 8 percent, according to today’s statement. The statistics office will release detailed GDP data Dec. 7.

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