Argentina's economy contracted 12.6 percent in the first seven months of 2020 compared to the same period of the previous year, the INDEC national statistics bureau reported on Monday.
The figure underlines the dramatic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and its accompanying lockdown, which arrived with Argentina already in the grip of a deep recession.
INDEC said on Monday that economic activity fell 13.2 percent in July year-on-year, though showed a slight recovery of 1.1 points in relation to June, as more activities were allowed to restart and restrictions were relaxed.
The sectors hardest hit in July, in relation to the same month of 2019, were fishing (down 67.1 percent), hotels and restaurants (down 65.4 percent), community, social and personal services (down 60.3 percent), construction (down 30.1percent) and real estate activity (down 10 percent). Only electricity, gas and water (up 4.4 percent) and financial services (up 2.9 percent) had a positive trend.
In recession since 2018, Argentina's GDP fell 2.5 percent last year. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts that the economy will close out the year down 9.9 percent, though private estimates and even the government put that figure close to 12 or 13 percent.