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Italy in recession after a fall of 0.2% of GDP in the fourth quarter

* "Technical recession" with two quarters of GDP decline

* Q4 GDP -0.2%, + 0.1% y / y, below expectations

* The government recognizes the recession to external factors

* He says he prefers recovery in 2019

by Gavin Jones

OCTOBER, Jan. 31 (TASR) – The Italian economy has been down for the second consecutive quarter in the last three months, according to statistics released Thursday, which put the country in recession.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the third largest economy in the euro area declined by 0.2% in Q4 in the third quarter after declining by 0.1% in the third quarter, according to Istat, the national statistical institute.

In more than one year, GDP remains, but only 0.1%.

The decline in the fourth quarter is stronger than expected, as expected by economists with whom Reuters expects an average decline of 0.1% quarter on quarter and a year-on-year increase of 0.3%.

Luigi Di Maio, Vice-President of the Italian Council, said the government wants the EU budget to be bigger.

He attributed the contraction of the third and fourth quarters to the previous left-wing government and added that his government would restore the situation in 2019.

He added that the May European elections would be de facto a referendum on fiscal savings. "I believe this referendum will have a positive outcome for those who reject austerity measures."

Giuseppe Conte, President of the Council, was interested in the economic situation and indicated a recession at the end of 2018 on the international situation.


"Even the naive analysts know that there is a trade war between the United States and China, and especially Germany is slowing down (…) This is a transitional phase that depends on external factors," he said.

"We are focusing on reviving our economy, which will surely happen in 2019," he added. This recovery will reach its full regime in the second half of the year. "

The opposition believes that a coalition government that has been operating since June, combining the 5 star movements (M5S) and the League, has worsened the economic situation by confronting Brussels and creating a loss of confidence, raising interest rates and affecting activity.

For the whole of 2018, Italy's growth slowed down to 1%, after 1.7% in 2017.

Istat attributes a decline to a decline in domestic demand, which takes precedence over the positive contribution of foreign trade.

It did not publish data on the various components of GDP in the fourth quarter, but said that activity declined in industry and agriculture and was "globally stable" in services.

For the year 2019, the government seeks 1% growth, but most independent organizations expect it barely to exceed 0.5%.

46 economists, recently reported by Reuters, are predicting average growth of 0.7% of GDP in 2019. Bank Italy and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) account for 0.6% of their share.

With Giuseppe Fonte and Francesca Piscioneri, Juliette Rouillon
for the French service, issued by Marc Angrand

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