Italian economic growth revised down as demand, exports rose

Bloomberg.- Italy’s economy grew slightly less than previously estimated in the third quarter, while exports and domestic consumption both showed increases as the nation seeks a firmer footing for recovery.

Gross domestic product expanded 0.4 percent from the second quarter, down from the 0.5 percent indicated in a preliminary report from national statistics agency Istat on Nov. 14. On an annual basis, the economy grew 1.7 percent, down from 1.8 percent in the prior release, Istat also said.

The country’s sales of goods and services abroad increased 1.6 percent in the three months through September from the previous quarter, while imports rose 1.2 percent, Istat said in a final report on Friday. Household consumption rose 0.3 percent, up from 0.2 in the previous quarter.

Recent data point to a possible slowdown in the economic recovery in the final part of 2017. September industrial production, orders and sales all fell. Unemployment was unchanged in October at 11.1 percent.

The country risks political gridlock after the general election next year that would keep the prospects for economic reform weak, Fitch Ratings said in a report Wednesday. The rating company added that the election is unlikely to deliver a government committed to euro-skeptic policies, but strong support for such a stance could shape the political agenda and increase pressure for fiscal loosening.

The country’s debt as ratio of GDP will rise slightly this year and won’t fall below 130 percent through 2019, the European Commission said Nov. 9.
Italy’s GDP growth will fall from 1.5 percent this year to 1.3 percent next and to 1 percent in 2019, according to a Bloomberg survey of 42 economists conducted last month.


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