Hungary GDP Growth Slows More Than Forecast in 2Q on Agriculture

Hungary’s economy grew less than forecast by analysts as a drop in agricultural output pushed the pace of expansion below 3 percent for the first time in seven quarters.

Gross domestic product grew 2.7 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier after a 3.5 percent gain in the previous three months, the statistics office in Budapest said on Friday, citing preliminary data. The median of 11 estimates in a Bloomberg survey was 3.2 percent. GDP grew 0.5 percent from the first quarter.

A drop in agricultural output outweighed industrial growth led by foreign carmakers with factories in Hungary including Daimler AG’s Mercedes, the statistics office said. The central bank’s cheap credit program, the Funding for Growth plan, and record-low interest rates failed to sustain expansion above 3 percent. The cabinet forecasts 3.1 percent growth in 2015.

The forint kept its losses after the data release, falling 0.2 percent to 310.34 against the euro by 9:02 a.m. in Budapest. The statistics office will publish a breakdown of GDP data and a revised estimate on Sept. 4.

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