Eurozone’s longest-ever recession comes to an end

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05:21 PM August 14th, 2013

August 14th, 2013 05:21 PM

A man pays for drinks at a market bar in Madrid, Spain, on Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013. After six quarters of a debilitating recession that has seen unemployment surge to record highs and public services being cut, the eurozone seems on the cusp of recovery. AP

BRUSSELS — Official figures confirm that the recession in the eurozone came to an end in the second quarter of the year.

Eurostat, the European Union’s statistics office, says the 17 European Union countries that use the eurozone saw their collective economic output grow by 0.3 percent in the April to June period from the previous quarter.

That was moderately better than the 0.2 percent anticipated in the markets, largely because of solid economic growth of 0.7 percent in Germany and a surprisingly strong 0.5 percent bounce-back in France.

Aside from Europe’s top two economies, there were signs of stabilization elsewhere, notably in Portugal, which grew 1.1 percent. There are even signs that the recession in Greece, the country at the heart of Europe’s debt crisis, may be easing too.

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