(MENAFN - The Peninsula) By Satish Kanady / The Peninsula
DOHA: Qatar banks recorded a 16.1 percent deposit growth in November 2017, on year-on-year. Private sector deposits increased for a fourth consecutive month in November as pressures on the banking system continued to ease. Broad money supply (M2) grew to 18.9 percent in November, up from 18.3 percent in October. Overnight and 3-month interbank rates were 2.07 percent and 2.75 percent respectively in November.
QNB's monthly monitor data released yesterday noted Qatar's fiscal deficit continued to narrow, reaching 4.1 percent of GDP in Q2, 2017 from a revised deficit of 5.1 percent in Q1-2017 (previously 5.5 percent). The current account surplus widened to 5.3 percent of GDP in Q3, 17 from 2.5 percent in Q2 while the deficit in the financial account narrowed.
Money and Banking assets expanded to $366bn in November, with the growth rate picking up to 11.7 percent year-on-year from 11.4 percent. Credit growth slowed to 12.9 percent y/y in November from 13.6 percent y/y in October. Banks' lending to the public sector grew 26.6 percent y/y.
The country's imports declined 2 percent y/y in November while exports grew 15.9 percent y/y, likely helped by higher hydrocarbon prices and increased output.
Real GDP picked up in Q3 mainly due to a recovery in the hydrocarbon sector. Non-hydrocarbon real GDP growth remained broadly flat in Q3.
Brent crude prices continued to rise, averaging $66.9/b in December; Qatar's oil production rose to 596,000 b/d in October from 571,000 b/d prior. Industrial production surged to 7.4 percnet y/y growth on a rebound in the mining sector due to less maintenance on LNG trains. The real estate price index stabilised in Q3, although it still fell 5.4 percent from a year ago.
Inflation was 0.6 percent in December, with food prices rising 5.6 percent and housing and utility prices declining 5.8 percent. 5-star and 4-star hotel occupancy rates remained flat at 56 percent and 59 percent respectively in November.
Qatar's population grew by 1.7 percent y/y, reaching 2.64m in December; women made up close to 25 percent of the population.
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