LIMA, Feb 15 Peru's economy grew 6.3 percent in
2012, one of the fastest paces in Latin America, but slowed in
December from the same month a year earlier as holidays ate into
building activity, official data showed on Friday.
Peru's statistics agency said growth in December was just
0.14 percent from November and 4.3 percent from December of
"It's probable that this is a seasonal issue caused by
holidays. In the case of commercial fishing, there was a
temporary ban in place," said Alejandro Vilchez of Peru's
Efforts to protect Peru's anchovy stocks caused the
commercial fishing sector, one of the world's largest, to drop
47 percent in December on the year, while manufacturing declined
2 percent and mining 1.7 percent.
Though the construction sector expanded just 5.3 percent in
December on the year, well below double-digit paces of previous
months, cement consumption in January spiked 18 percent -
suggesting building activity will quickly bounce back.
Gains in 2012 were led by construction, up 15 percent, and
financial services, up 10 percent. Retail sales rose 6.7
percent, underscoring the strength of domestic demand that has
Those sectors outpaced the economy's traditional engine of
mineral exports as the mining and oil sector grew just 2 percent
Continued economic expansion has added jobs to the economy
in metropolitan Lima, where the average jobless rate in the
three months through January was 6.1 percent.