MPC Press Release- May 2008
Available information on the economy show a fairly resilient and robust economic performance with regard to output and demand growth and external trade and payments position in the face of shocks in the policy environment based on strong economic fundamentals.
Latest data indicate that the level of economic activity continued to be strong into the first quarter of 2008. The Bank’s Composite Index of Economic Activity rose by 3.0 percent, some easing in the growth rate but at 28.5 percent in year-on-year terms, is above the trend growth of 21.3 percent at the end of March 2008. This compares with 21.4 percent recorded in the same period of 2007. All the major sub-components showed strong growth.
Additional information for tracking real sector performance, such as social security payments, job vacancies, and retail sales also point to robust economic activity. Registered number of firms on the SSNIT scheme increased by 20.8 percent over the 17,684 registered firms recorded in the first quarter of 2007. For the first quarter of 2008, total social security contributions increased by 10.4 to GH¢19.3 million, compared with GH¢14.8 million recorded for the same period in 2007, and GH¢17.4 million for December 2007.
- Cement production increased by 23.4 percent to 609,424 metric tons during the first quarter of 2008, compared to 493,879 metric tons recorded for the same period in 2007.
- The index for general retail sales suggests strong consumer demand growth in the first quarter of 2008.
- Advertised job vacancies recorded for the first four months of 2008 was 5,147, a sharp increase over the 2,243 recorded in 2007, with most of the vacancies in the services sector. This translates into an average monthly job vacancies advertised of 1,286 for the first four months of 2008 compared with 560 for the same period in 2007.