Eurozone: Euro area GDP contracts for sixth consecutive quarter
May 15, 2013
In the first quarter, Eurozone GDP dropped 0.2% over the previous period, according to the flash estimate released by the statistical office (Eurostat) on 15 May. The reading, which marks the sixth consecutive contraction, marked an improvement over the 0.6% drop recorded in Q4 2012 and was broadly in line with the 0.1% fall expected by FocusEconomics panellists. On an annual basis, the economy contracted 1.0%, which marks a deterioration compared to the 0.9% drop recorded in the previous quarter.
Out of the major countries in the region, only Germany, which accounts for nearly 30% of the Eurozone's output, avoided a recession, as the economy expanded 0.1% compared to the previous quarter (Q4 2012: -0.7% quarter-on-quarter). All the remaining major economies experienced contractions. France dropped 0.2% compared to the previous quarter (Q4: -0.2% qoq), while both Spain and Italy declined 0.5% over the previous quarter, improving respectively from the minus 0.9% and minus 0.8% recorded in Q4.
FocusEconomics panellists expect the economy to contract 0.4% in 2013, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month's forecast. For 2014, panellists expect the economy to expand 1.0%.
Author: Armando Ciccarelli, Head of Data Solutions