UpdateGermany’s economy stalled in Q4, growth slower across EU

12 February 2010 11:23  [Source: ICIS news]

(Adds EU statistics)

LONDON (ICIS news)--Germany’s economy stalled in the fourth quarter, showing no growth in output compared with the third quarter of 2009 and a 1.7% drop versus the fourth quarter of 2008, the federal Statistical Office (Destatis) said on Friday.

The slowing of growth in GDP compared with the third quarter was reflected across Europe.

Statistics release by other EU member states showed France’s GDP growing by 0.6% in the fourth quarter from the third, but Italy and Greece still in recession.

GDP growth slowed in the quarter across Europe, with a 0.1% increase from the third quarter in the EU and in the eurozone, Eurostat said. Growth rates in the third quarter had been 0.3% and 0.4% in both regions.

The year-on-year fourth-quarter contractions were 2.3% in the EU and 2.1% in the eurozone, with the full-year 2009 falls at 4.1% and 4.0% respectively.

The only positive contribution to growth in Germany came from foreign trade, Destasis said. Economic growth had tracked upward in the third quarter of 2009 by 0.7%, having grown by 0.4% in quarter two.

The fourth-quarter decline in Germany compared with the fourth quarter of 2008 was greater when adjusted for the number of working days available in each comparable quarter, at -2.4%, but was “markedly smaller” that the third-quarter 2009 year-on-year drop of -4.8%.

The number of people in work in Germany on a year-to-year basis in the fourth quarter shrank by only 0.4%, or 156,000, to 40.6m.

If growth were maintained at the fourth-quarter 2009 level, Germany's economy would expand by only 0.5% in 2010, the statistical office added.

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By: Nigel Davis
+44 20 8652 3214

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