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Estonia GDP Grows 3.5% in Third Quarter, More Than Seen

Estonia’s economy grew 3.5 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier, faster than the preliminary estimate of 3.4 percent, bolstered by construction and export growth.

Output grew a seasonally adjusted 1.6 percent from the previous quarter, compared with an earlier estimate of a 1.7 percent expansion, the statistics office in the capital, Tallinn, said on its website today.

Estonia, the first former Soviet republic to adopt the euro, has been buffered by robust retail sales, rising corporate investment and public-sector construction financed by sales of spare United Nations carbon-emissions quota. The $22 billion economy may grow 2.5 percent this year and 3.1 percent in 2013 as economies of its main export partners recover from Europe’s debt crisis, the European Commission forecast.

“Construction contributed the most to the economic growth already for the fourth quarter in succession,” the statistics office said in a statement. “Fast growth of the value added of administrative and support service, information and communication, agriculture and forestry and transport and storage activities had a substantial impact on economic growth.”

Household spending advanced 7 percent after a 2 percent increase in the second quarter, while shipments of goods such as wireless network gear for Stockholm-based Ericsson AB and wind generators for Zurich-based ABB Ltd. rose 5 percent from a year earlier after a 4 percent increase in the second quarter.

Estonia has no outstanding bonds, so investors speculate on its creditworthiness by trading credit-default swaps. Five-year Estonian CDS traded at 69 basis points on Dec. 7, eight basis points from a five-year low of 61 on Nov. 27, according to data provider CMA. Moody’s Investors Service in July affirmed Estonia’s A1 rating, the fifth-highest investment grade and one notch above fellow euro-area member Slovakia.

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