Eurozone Economy Expands Less Than Estimated

Still, it marked a sharp rebound after the German economy barely expanded over the summer months.

German data, released earlier in the session, was slightly weaker than expected with a 0.4% increase for the quarter compared with consensus forecasts of 0.5% which helped pull the Euro-zone data slightly lower.

Germany's traditionally powerful exports contributed less to growth in the fourth quarter, as imports increased faster, Destatis added. Many economists have expressed concern about the long-term health of the German economy as its open door policies on immigration have cost the government billions of dollars.

"However, uncertainties remain especially in the trade environment", the ministry said.

The index for investors' future expectations fell by 6.2 points to 10.4 points last month, Mannheim-based ZEW said in a statement.

A separate gauge measuring investors' assessment of the economy's current conditions edged down to 76.4 points from 77.3 in January.




"Political uncertainty regarding Brexit, the future United States economic policy as well as the considerable number of upcoming elections in Europe further depresses expectations", he added. Exports weak, domestic demand holding up The eurozone GDP growth revision was partly due to a large drop in industrial output in December.

While the struggles of the Italian economy in 2016 dragged down the overall growth among the 19 nations in the European Union, the success of the German economy raised the continent's combined GDP after it posted an annual growth rate of 1.9 percent at the end of the year.

This was the highest annual inflation rate since July 2013.

On a non-harmonized basis, consumer price inflation for January was also confirmed with the national index rising by 1.9 percent from the previous year.

"The economic situation in Germany in 2016 thus was characterised by solid and steady growth", Destatis commented.

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