Italy's industrial production increased in December after declining for three consecutive months, data released by the statistical office ISTAT revealed Friday.
Industrial production rose a seasonally adjusted 0.4 percent from November, when output fell a revised 1.1 percent. Economists had forecast a 0.3 percent gain for December. Production dropped 1.1 percent in October and 1.2 percent in September.
Year-on-year, Italian industrial production declined 6.6 percent in December, following a 7.7 percent slump in the previous month. On an unadjusted basis, the decrease was 9.3 percent.
The latest purchasing managers' survey also showed signs of stabilization in the Italian manufacturing sector during January as output and new orders shrunk at slower rates. The sector contracted the least in ten months.
The recession-hit economy shrunk 0.2 percent in the third quarter. The Bank of Italy estimates a 2 percent decline in the gross domestic product for 2012. The bank has forecast 1 percent contraction for this year, which is much worse than its earlier projection of 0.2 percent shrinkage.
The bank expects a modest return to growth in the second half of 2013, which is expected to lead to growth in 2014.
by RTT Staff Writer
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