Following the easing of Covid-19 control measures, the euro area economy grew at the fastest pace on record in the third quarter after shrinking for two straight quarters, the flash estimate from Eurostat showed Friday.
Another report revealed that the trade balance returned to the pre-crisis levels in September as exports recovered more quickly than imports in the last five months.
Gross domestic product grew 12.6 percent from the second quarter, when it was down by a record 11.8 percent. The latest pace of growth was slightly slower than the 12.7 percent decrease initially estimated.
On a yearly basis, GDP was down 4.4 percent, much slower than the 14.8 percent decrease seen in the second quarter. According to the preliminary flash estimate, released on October 31, GDP decreased 4.3 percent in the third quarter.
The EU27 GDP grew 11.6 percent on quarter but shrank 4.3 percent annually in the third quarter.
Eurozone employment increased by 0.9 percent sequentially, the strongest since the time series started in 1995. Compared to the same period last year, employment dropped 2 percent, following a 3.1 percent decrease in the second quarter.
Although euro area exports and imports increased in September, they continued to stay below the pre-crisis level, Eurostat reported. Exports increased 4.1 percent month-on-month and imports gained 2.7 percent in September.
As a result, the trade surplus rose to EUR 24 billion from EUR 21 billion in August.
On an unadjusted basis, the trade surplus totaled EUR 24.8 billion versus a EUR 18.3 billion surplus in the same period last year. Year-on-year, exports and imports fell 3.1 percent and 7.1 percent, respectively.
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