Québec, March 24, 2021. – In the fourth quarter of 2020, Québec’s real gross domestic product (GDP) at market prices was up 1.5% from the previous quarter (+12.6% in the third quarter). Expressed at an annualized rate, real GDP grew 6.3%. That was revealed today in Comptes économiques du Québec, 4e trimestre 2020 published by the Institut de la statistique du Québec.
The real GDP increase in the fourth quarter of 2020 came from a large change in business inventories. Final domestic demand edged down 0.4%. Final consumption expenditure rose (+0.2%), despite a decline in household expenditures (-0.5%). Business investment decreased (-2.7%), as did government investment (-3.3%). Both imports (+1.7%) and exports (+1.6%) were up.
For 2020 overall, Québec’s real GDP at market prices was down 5.3%, after increasing 2.7% in 2019. This was the first annual decline in real GDP since 2009. Nominal GDP, which takes into account price fluctuations, was down 4.0% in 2020.
In real terms, final domestic demand fells by 3.7% in 2020, the sharpest drop observed since the 1982 recession. Final consumption expenditure declined (-4.3%), after growing 2.1% in 2019. Household final consumption expenditure (-5.6%) posted a historic decline, due to a sharp drop in services spending (-11.6%). Spending on goods rose by 1.1%, on account of a 3.4% increase in expenditures on non-durable goods. General governments final consumption expenditure posted a small decline (-0.8%).
Gross fixed capital formation was down 1.6% in Québec in 2020. Business investment in non-residential structures decreased by 3.9%, while investment in machinery and equipment fell by 14.0%. For its part, residential investment registered growth (+2.8%). General governments gross fixed capital formation rose by 1.6% due to a significant increase in investment in machinery and equipment (+17.8%).
Total exports of goods and services declined 11.7% in 2020. International exports decreased by 11.7%, and exports to the other provinces, by 11.5%. Total imports were down 13.2% (international: -15.0%; interprovincial: -9.1%). Since the total import volume declined more than the export volume, the external sector tempered the drop in real GDP in 2020.
According to data released by Statistics Canada on March 2, Canada’s real GDP at market prices increased by 2.3% in the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to the previous quarter (+9.6% at an annualized rate). For 2020 overall, Canada’s real GDP decreased by 5.4%, after growing 1.9% in 2019.
Real gross domestic product at market prices and its main components1 (percentage change)
|Real gross domestic product at market prices||12.6||1.5||-5.3||8.9||2.3||-5.4|
|Final domestic demand||14.2||-0.4||-3.7||11.2||0.9||-4.5|
|Final consumption expenditure||12.4||0.2||-4.3||10.3||0.4||-4.7|
|Gross fixed capital formation||21.6||-2.8||-1.6||14.5||2.3||-3.6|
|Exports of goods and services||13.1||1.6||-11.7||14.7||1.2||-9.8|
|Imports of goods and services||19.6||1.7||-13.2||21.6||2.6||-11.3|
1. Changes in real gross domestic product at market prices and its components are calculated from seasonally-adjusted data and are expressed in chained dollars using the chain Fisher index (reference year 2012).
Québec’s real GDP at basic prices rose 0.4% in December 2020, following a 0.8% increase in November. Goods-producing industries were up 0.9%, while service-producing industries grew 0.3% in December. That was revealed in Produit intérieur brut par industrie au Québec, décembre 2020 released today by the Institut de la statistique du Québec.
In 2020 overall, the output of goods-producing industries declined by 7.6%, while that of service-producing industries was down by 4.4%.
The main sectors behind the decline in 2020 were manufacturing (-10.0%), transportation and warehousing (-20.0%), accommodation and food services (-31.6%), construction (-9.3%), and educational services (-8.3%). The arts, entertainment and recreation sector, which fell by 39.9%, posted the most significant relative drop in 2020.
According to data published by Statistics Canada on March 2, Canada’s real GDP at basic prices rose 0.1% in December 2020. Goods-producing industries grew 0.6%, while service-producing industries edged down 0.1% in December. For 2020 overall, goods-producing industries registered a 6.2% drop and service-producing industries posted a 4.9% decline.
Special bulletin: The impact of the pandemic on Québec’s economic sectors and GDP in 2020.
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