The eurozone’s reputation as the laggard of the global economy appeared to be overly pessimistic, after revised figures showed annual GDP growth in the currency bloc edged higher to 1.7%.
Eurostat, the official data agency for the European Union, showed that GDP growth in the first quarter was 0.6%, after being trimmed to 0.5% in an earlier estimate, pushing the annual growth rate up from the previous estimate of 1.6%.
Eurostat pointed out that an increase in investment was among the biggest factors in the boost to GDP across the eurozone along with a rise in exports of 0.4%, though the eurozone’s healthy trade balance was slightly eroded by a rise in imports of 0.7%.
Among the largest economies in the EU, France grew at 0.6%, Germany 0.7% and Spain 0.8%. Italy could only manage a 0.3% growth rate while Greece contracted by 0.5%, Poland slipped by 0.1% and Hungary suffered a 0.8% drop in national income.