June 8, 2017 / 9:01 AM / 7 months ago

Euro zone growth revised up to highest rate in a year in Q1

    BRUSSELS, June 8 (Reuters) - The euro zone economy grew by
more than previously estimated in the first quarter and at its
fastest rate in a year, EU statistics agency Eurostat said on
Thursday, ahead of a European Central Bank meeting likely to
keep policy unchanged.
    Eurostat said the 19-country euro zone expanded by 0.6
percent quarter-on-quarter and by 1.9 percent year-on-year.    
That compared with earlier estimates of 0.5 and 1.7 percent
    On an annualised basis, the euro zone economy was expanding
at a rate of 2.3 percent in the Jan-March period, far
outstripping the 1.2 percent rate of the United States.
    Solid economy growth but subdued inflation has left the ECB
in a quandary. ECB President Mario Draghi is yet to be convinced
that a recent rebound of inflation is durable because wage
growth remains sluggish.
    The ECB is widely expected to keep policy unchanged on
Thursday, including its 2.3 trillion euro ($2.6 trillion)
bond-buying programme and sub-zero interest rates, despite
resistance from cash-rich Germany.             
    However, the robust growth could lead the ECB to remove a
reference to "downside risks" in its statement.
    Eurostat said household consumption contributed 0.2
percentage points and gross fixed capital formation 0.3 points
and government consumption 0.1 points to the first-quarter
growth figure. The contributions of external trade and
inventories was neutral.
    For further details of Eurostat data click on:   

 (Reporting By Philip Blenkinsop)
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