Weakest Links Drag Eurozone GDP Back Towards Recession

Eurozone GDP notably slowed in the fourth quarter of 2009, growing just 0.1% over the previous quarter.Sluggish growth from major economies appears to have been dragged down by falling GDP in some of the weaker periphery economies.

Euro Stat: GDP increased by 0.1% in both the euro area (EA16) and the EU271 during the fourth quarter of 2009, compared with the previous quarter. …In the third quarter of 2009, growth rates were +0.4% and +0.3% respectively.

European growth is pretty weak when compared to that of the U.S. during the same periods, based on the same data source (Euro Stat):

Euro Stat: During the fourth quarter of 2009, US GDP increased by 1.4% compared with the previous quarter, after +0.6% in the third quarter.

Here’s where Europe appears to be markedly diverging from the U.S. — industrial production looks as though it is now falling from its previously meek rebound:

Euro Stat Industrial Production Report: In December 2009 compared with November 2009, seasonally adjusted industrial production fell by 1.7% in the euro area (EA16) and by 1.9% in the EU272. … Compared with 2008, the average production index for 2009 fell by 14.9% in the euro area and by 13.9% in the EU27. These estimates are released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.
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