The Latest: Stocks slip after figures show eurozone economic growth easing in third quarter

BRUSSELS – The latest news on the European economic figures released Friday. All times local:

1:05 p.m.

Stock markets are sliding in Europe after official figures showed a slowdown across many countries in the 19-country eurozone.

Germany’s benchmark DAX index was down 0.9 per cent and France’s CAC 40 dropped 1.1 per cent.

The eurozone economy grew by a quarterly rate of 0.3 per cent in the June-September period, down from 0.4 per cent in the previous quarter.

The biggest economies, including Germany, France and Italy, all showed weak growth, with only Spain enjoying a strong expansion.

The results have increased expectations that the European Central Bank will expand its monetary stimulus as soon as next month.


11:10 a.m.

Across much of the 19-country eurozone, economic growth was a struggle in the third quarter of the year despite cheaper oil, moderate or falling consumer prices and a lower euro.

The Eurostat figures showed that many eurozone economies saw growth ease during the period — not just the powerhouse economy of Germany.

Italy’s anemic recovery continues with growth at just 0.2 per cent against 0.3 per cent the previous quarter, while Portugal, which is currently without a government, saw no growth at all, compared with a 0.5 per cent increase in the second quarter. And the Netherlands barely expanded by 0.1 per cent for the second straight quarter.

Jonathan Loynes, chief European economist at Capital Economics, says the outlook isn’t too rosy as growth will likely slow “as the temporary boosts from lower oil prices and the euro fade.”


11:00 a.m.

Official figures show that economy of the 19-country eurozone lost momentum during the third quarter despite a number of tail-winds.

Eurostat, the EU’s statistics agency, says quarter-on-quarter growth moderated to 0.3 per cent from 0.4 per cent in the previous three-month period.

The slowdown came as growth in Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, eased from 0.4 per cent to 0.3 per cent.

Spain was the standout among the eurozone’s big economies, growing by a quarterly rate of 0.8 per cent.

The Greek economy shrank by 0.5 per cent as it struggled with stringent controls on the free flow of money, notably a 60-euro a day limit on ATM withdrawals.

The figures are likely to cement market expectations that the European Central Bank will inject another dose of stimulus into the eurozone economy at its December policy meeting.


9:20 a.m.

Figures later are expected to show that the 19-country eurozone economy grew by 0.4 per cent in the third quarter from the previous three-month period.

However, following earlier figures showing Germany and France grew at a quarterly tick of 0.3 per cent, there are predictions in the markets that the eurozone figure could come in slightly lower at 0.3 per cent.

RBC Capital Markets economist Timo del Carpio said the risks to the eurozone growth rate “are titled toward a marginally softer outcome.”

The eurozone figures are due at 11:00 a.m. local.


8:45 a.m.

Germany’s economy, Europe’s biggest, grew by 0.3 per cent in the third quarter of the year from the previous three-month period — another modest increase that was in line with market expectations.

The increase reported by the Federal Statistical Office was a tad lower than the 0.4 per cent increase reported in the second quarter.

The agency said the third-quarter growth was mainly due to “domestic final consumption expenditure” with both household and government consumption spending rising.

The German government last month trimmed its economic growth forecast for this year to 1.7 per cent from 1.8 per cent, citing weakness in China and other major emerging economies. It left its 2016 forecast unchanged at 1.8 per cent.


8:25 a.m.

France’s economy grew 0.3 per cent in the third quarter from the previous three-month figure, a modest increase that is likely to ease fears of stagnation in the eurozone’s No. 2 economy.

The increase was in line with market expectations and welcome after that France saw zero growth in the second quarter. Based on the third quarter rise, state statistics agency Insee said it expects 1.1 per cent growth this year.

Consumer spending was the main driver behind the quarterly rise. It grew 0.3 per cent.

French President Francois Hollande’s Socialist government is trying to loosen up labour rules to encourage investment and reduce unemployment, which has stayed around 10 per cent for years.