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ECONOMIC DATA THIS WEEK

European GDP, 1st Quarter 2017:  The latest figures from Eurostat have revised up the estimates for GDP at the start of the year;  the quarter-on-quarter growth rate for both the Euro-Zone and the EU28 is now put at +0.6% (having been +0.5% in the previous estimate).  The annualised growth rate is now 1.9% for the Euro-zone (up from +1.7% in the previous release) and +2.1% for the EU28 (was +2.0% previously).

In all cases, these represent slightly faster growth rates than were recorded at the end of 2016 and confirm a general improvement in the European economy.  However, the UK is something of an exception to this trend having downgraded its growth estimate at the second release of data and we had the lowest quarter-on-quarter growth rate (at +0.2%) among the 25 Member States for whom the data was published.

The fastest growth rates were recorded in Romania (+1.7%), Latvia (+1.6%) and Slovenia (+1.4%).

Looking at the composition of growth, there was a positive contribution from household consumption and gross fixed capital formation, while external trade and inventories were neutral for the Euro-zone, but respectively, negative and positive for the EU28.

You can access the Eurostat News Release via their web-site at www.ec.europa.eu/eurostat/news/news-releases or request it from MTA.