Somewhat lower output growth
The contact enterprises in Norges Bank's regional network reported that overall output growth over the past 3 months had slowed slightly compared with the previous round. Overall, contacts expected growth to be slightly higher over the next 6 months.
Growth picked up in the household service sector, but slowed or was stable in the other sectors. Retail trade and the service industries expected slightly higher growth ahead, while the other industries expected growth to be somewhat lower over the next 6 months.
The share of network enterprises reporting capacity pressures edged down. Capacity pressures were still highest in the construction industry. Overall, enterprises planned a moderate increase in investment over the next 12 months. Employment growth slowed and was slightly lower than expected. Network contacts expected employment growth to pick up slightly ahead.
Contacts estimated annual wage growth in 2013 at 4 percent. Estimates were lowest in manufacturing, construction and retail trade and highest in the service industries.
Information was provided by 329 regional network enterprises in this round. Most of the interviews were conducted in January.
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