BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Industrial output in the 19 countries sharing the euro currency, rose by more than expected in May, aided by a spike in the production of capital goods and consumer durables, European statistics office Eurostat said on Wednesday.
Compared to the previous month, industrial production in the euro area increased by 1.3 percent for a 4.0 percent annual increase. This was ahead of a Reuters poll of 42 economists which had on average expected a 1.1 and 3.6 percent rise.
While industrial production is a trailing indicator, forward looking data are also pointing to a sustained recovery, with euro zone economic sentiment jumping to its highest level in almost 10 years in June.
Growth was strongest for capital goods, such as machinery and equipment, and durable consumer goods, such as cars and household appliances, which rose 2.3 percent and 1.8 percent respectively compared to the previous month.
Industrial production rose most sharply in Lithuania and Ireland, with France being the largest riser among the bloc's main economies.
Eurostat slightly revised down its reading for April, to growth of 0.3 percent from a previous estimate of 0.5 percent.
Reporting by Robert-Jan Bartunek; Editing by Alissa de Carbonnel