France & Spain: Q1 GDP growth

Available data point towards 0.5% GDP growth in the euro area in the first quarter.


France and Spain today became the first big countries in the euro area to publish GDP growth figures for Q1. French real GDP expanded by 0.3% q-o-q in Q1 2017, down from +0.5% q-o-q in Q4, and lower than what was expected by the consensus.

The details were more encouraging than the headline figure. In particular, investment accelerated sharply. Some of the weaknesses in private consumption were explained by temporary factors.

Meanwhile, Spanish real GDP expanded by 0.8% q-o-q in Q1, marking an acceleration over the previous quarter.

Overall, Euro area GDP (to be published on May 3) is likely to come in at 0.5% q-o-q in Q1, in between estimates based on available soft and hard data.

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