BRUSSELS (Dow Jones) – The economic performance of the euro zone is in the first quarter of 2010 grew a bit stronger than expected, with regional differences were sometimes substantial. (Photo DDP:)
The gross domestic product (GDP) of the common currency area for the quarter rose by 0.2% over the previous year by 0.5%, as the European statistics agency Eurostat announced on Wednesday in the first publication. Economists had forecast rates plus 0.1% and plus 0.4%. In the fourth quarter of 2009 GDP, in the euro area remained unchanged from the previous quarter and the year was shrunk by 2.2%.
In the EU-27 increased the economic performance in first quarter of the year 2010 compared to the previous quarter also rose 0.2% year on year by 0.3%. In the final quarter of 2009, it was for the quarter grew by 0.1% over the previous year, and shrunk by 2.3%. The second release of GDP data for the first quarter for the fourth June provided.
In regional analysis showed significant differences. Especially high growth rates were registered in Portugal (up 1.0%), Slovakia (up 0.8%) and Italy (up 0.5%), while the recession in Greece (down 0.8% continued).
Among the economic heavyweights Germany surprised once again positive. to stagnate rather than as expected due to the hard and long winter, GDP grew by 0.2% and for the fourth quarter, giving up 0.2% from the previously reported 0.0% was revised upwards.
"Although the first quarter was still weak, but expect the strong since February monthly economic indicators, a really strong second quarter. Together with the upward revised final quarter of 2009, so that is a growth in gross domestic product in 2010 reached 2%, predicted DekaBank economist Andreas Scheuerle. By contrast France disappointed with growth of just 0.1% in the first quarter and a downward revision of the previous quarter.
Commerzbank continues to anticipate an economic recovery in various speeds, and has primarily Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy in the view that there should still make considerable efforts to overcome the effects of the crisis. "The economies of these countries, which together account for one third of the Euro-economy will probably grow as the year only slightly, thus preventing a stronger recovery in the euro-economy. It will take more than two years before the euro economy back produced as much as before the crisis, "said Commerzbank economist Christoph Weil. For 2010 he expects the euro-zone unemployment stable growth of only 1%.
DJG / have / apo / sh