The Spanish economy accelerated its growth in the second quarter of the year, a stage marked by the war in Ukraine (which began at the end of February) but in which families have increased spending, investment in housing has grown and companies have maintained its pace of capital formation. In addition, the foreign sector has recorded its best 12 months in at least 22 years, contributing 4.9 points to the national economy.
The INE has published this morning the national accounting figures, where it has revised upward four tenths the quarter-on-quarter GDP figure, from 1.1% to 1.5%, and five the year-on-year figure, from the 6.3% previously forecast until 6.8%. In both cases, the economy accelerated, after closing the first quarter of the year, already very marked by the cost of energy products, with growth of -0.2 (in quarterly terms) and 6.7% year-on-year.
Household spending, the main factor in the dynamism of the economy, has been affected by the energy crisis, growing by 0.5% quarterly. In the second quarter, the inflationary process intensified, and the CPI ended June with a variation of 10.2%. Even so, the consumption figure of families improves that of the fourth quarter of 2021 and the first of 2022 (-0.3% and -0.9%), periods in which the price of electricity had already begun to punish to household accounts. In year-on-year variation, the inflationary bill emerges, but its weight is limited: the 2.5% rise is one point lower than the figure for the first quarter (biased upwards by the Filomena storm in 2021) and is more than two percentage points below of the end of 21.
This has been offset by the export capacity of the Spanish economy, a habitual behavior in difficult times. In fact, domestic demand has contributed just 1.9 points to year-on-year growth, less than a third, while exports have accelerated their growth (up to 23% year-on-year) and imports have slowed down, growing at a rate of 8.8%. The data is supported by tourist spending, which is multiplied by more than four times, by exports of services (doubling) and also by exports of goods, which grew 1.8% after falling slightly in the previous quarter . External demand goes from contributing 1.7 points to GDP to 4.9. It is the best figure in the national accounting series, which began in 2000.
The energy crisis, in parallel, did not scare off investment either. Companies increased the purchase of capital goods by 4.4% compared to last year (two points more than between January and March) and 2.9% compared to the first quarter. And investment in housing shows very good figures, with growth of 6.5% quarterly and 4.4% year-on-year. In terms of value added by sector, industry grew 4.5% over 2021 and construction, 5.1%. The figures are consistent with the good data on job creation and home sales published in previous months. The differential factor for the improvement in GDP has been, in any case, abroad.
In terms of employment, full-time equivalent employment grew by 5.2%, which represents 939,000 full-time contracts, 1.7 points less than GDP. Thus, productivity, which fell significantly, recovers: productivity per job increases 1.5% over last year, and productivity per hour, 3.4%. Unit labor costs (the labor cost per unit of production) increased by 0.3%, well below the 3.6% shown by the GDP deflator (a measure of the impact of inflation on value creation). Employment grows with out in industry, 3.7%, and in services, 6.2%.
The total remuneration received by Spanish employees grew by 7.6% given that the number of employees grew by 5.8% and the average remuneration increased by 1.8%. Companies, meanwhile, raise their margins by 12.5%.