In the Euro Area (EA), GDP in real terms registered a year-on-year change rate of 1.5% in the first quarter of 2016 (1.4% in the previous quarter). In April, the consumer confidence and the economic sentiment indicators decreased in the EA. In the same month, the raw materials and oil prices presented monthly change rates of 2.4% and 6.5%, respectively (3.8% and 18.7% in March).
In Portugal, GDP recorded a volume year-on-year change rate of 0.8% in the first quarter of 2016 (1.3% in the previous quarter). Comparing with the previous quarter, the GDP change rate was 0.1% in the first quarter of 2016 (0.2% in the fourth quarter). The economic activity indicator stabilized in February and March, after decelerating in the two previous months, while the economic climate indicator increased between February and April. The quantitative indicator of private consumption presented a higher year on year growth in March, reflecting the acceleration of the non-durable component. The Gross Fixed Capital Formation (GFCF) indicator decelerated, due to the more intense negative contribution of the construction component and to the less intense positive contribution of the transport material component. Concerning the international trade of goods, exports and imports recorded year-on-year nominal change rates of -2.0% and 1.0% in March, respectively (-1.1% and 1.5% in February). Considering the economic activity from the production perspective, in the case of industry, the turnover index registered negative change rates in nominal terms in the last months, which may reflect reduction of prices, since the industrial production index, although decelerating, maintained a positive growth in March and the respective price index maintained a negative change rate. The services turnover index presented a slight growth in nominal terms in March, influenced by a positive effect due to Easter that in 2016 occurred in March while in 2015 occurred in April, interrupting the sequence of negative change rates observed since October. The construction and public works production index presented a more pronounced negative change rate in March.
In the first quarter of 2016, the unemployment rate was 12.4%, which compares with 12.2% in the previous quarter and 13.7% in the first quarter of 2015. Total employment recorded a year-on-year change rate of 0.8% (1.6% in the fourth quarter of 2015) and the active population diminished 0.7% (change rate of 0.1% in the previous quarter).
The year-on-year change rate of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) was 0.5% in April (0.4% in February and March), with a change rate of -0.2% in the goods component (-0.4% in the previous month) and 1.5% in the services component (1.7% in March).