Eurozone industrial production declined for the second consecutive month in April reinforcing the view that the currency bloc is heading into a recession.
Industrial production logged a monthly fall of 0.8 percent in April after easing 0.1 percent in March, data from Eurostat showed Wednesday. Nonetheless, the decline was smaller than economists' forecast of 1.2 percent drop.
April's industrial production figures provided a further indication that the Eurozone's narrow escape from technical recession in the first quarter will not last very long, said Jonathan Loynes, an economist at Capital Economics.
Following increases in March, production of capital goods and non-durable consumer goods fell 2.6 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively from a month ago.
Likewise, intermediate goods output dipped 1.2 percent. Durable consumer goods production was down 0.9 percent after remaining flat a month ago. In contrast, production of energy was lifted by 6.9 percent due to bad weather.
Annually, industrial output dropped at a faster pace of 2.3 percent in April, following a 1.5 percent drop in March. Economists had expected a bigger decline of 2.7 percent.
In the EU27, overall production dropped 0.4 percent month-on-month, taking the annual decrease to 1.7 percent in April.
Among the member states, industrial production fell in eleven and rose in twelve. The largest annual decreases were registered in Italy, Spain and Portugal. Meanwhile, the biggest increases were seen in Slovakia, Lithuania and the Netherlands.
Gross domestic product for the euro area remained flat in the first quarter after shrinking 0.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011. The European Commission has forecast the 17-nation bloc to shrink 0.3 percent this year, before expanding 1 percent in 2013.
by RTT Staff Writer
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