Euro zone growth sticks to lowest rate in four years

Unemployment falls to 7.9% year-on-year

Unemployment in the euro zone stood at 7.9 per cent in December. The Republic had an unemployment rate of 5.3 per cent. Photograph: iStock

Unemployment in the euro zone stood at 7.9 per cent in December. The Republic had an unemployment rate of 5.3 per cent. Photograph: iStock

 

The euro zone economy stuck to its lowest pace of growth in four years in the final three months of 2018, data showed on Thursday.

Gross domestic product (GDP) in the 19 countries sharing the single currency rose by 0.2 per cent in the quarter and by 1.2 per cent year-on-year, data from the European statistics agency Eurostat showed.

Both figures matched the average forecasts of economists polled by Reuters. The quarter-on-quarter rate in the fourth quarter matched that of the third quarter, which had been the lowest rate since the second quarter of 2014.

Unemployment in the currency bloc stood at 7.9 per cent, down from 8.6 per cent in December 2017.

The lowest unemployment rates in December 2018 were recorded in the Czech Republic (2.1 per cent), Germany (3.3 per cent) and Poland (3.5 per cent). The highest rate of unemployment was seen in Greece (18.6 per cent in October), Spain (14.3 per cent) and Italy (10.3 per cent. The Republic had an unemployment rate of 5.3 per cent in the same month. – Reuters