BUENOS AIRES May 24 Argentina's April
industrial production rose 1.7 percent from a year earlier
, buoyed by a big jump in automobile output and more
modest gains in the production of building materials, government
data showed on Friday.
The figure came in below the 2.0 percent median growth
forecast given in a Reuters poll, in which estimates ranged from
0.5 percent to 4.0 percent.
Compared with March, industrial output inched up 0.1 percent
on a seasonally adjusted basis, the INDEC national statistics
Argentina's economy, the third-biggest in Latin America, has
slowed sharply in the past year after booming during most of the
last decade. Analysts ascribe this to soft global demand, high
inflation and the negative impact of currency and trade controls
In the first four months of the year, industrial production
fell 0.5 percent versus the same period of 2012, INDEC said.
In April, automobile production surged 38.8 percent from a
year earlier while non-metallic minerals - including glass and
cement - rose 7.5 percent.
In April versus March, oil refining dropped 16.4 percent,
likely reflecting the impact of a fire at the country's biggest
Overall industrial production rose 0.2 percent in March
year-on-year and 1.5 percent versus February.