Europe’s two largest economies emerge from recession

| August 13, 2009 | 0 Comments

The German and French economies, Europe’s two largest, have both experienced economic growth during the second quarter of 2009.

The news has surprised many economists and French Finance and Economy Minister, Christine Lagarde, comments: “The data is very surprising. After four negative quarters France is coming out of the red.”

Ms Largarde said that consumer spending and strong exports have helped drag France out of recession.

Both economies grew by 0.3% between the April and June period, ending the year-long recessions in both countries.

The German economy, which is Europe’s biggest, shrank by a revised 3.8% in the first quarter of the year, (the most since reunification in 1990), weighed down by a slump in demand for exports. For the last six years, Germany has been the world’s biggest exporter of goods.

However, there were tentative signs of recovery in Germany after it was reported last week that exports surged 7% in June - the fastest pace in almost three years.

Meanwhile France’s economy contracted by a revised 1.1% in the January to March period.

The euro zone’s official gross domestic product (GDP) figures are to be released later today.

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