Financial alarm bells have been ringing across the eurozone. Economic growth ground to a halt in the second quarter according to statistics agency Eurostat.
The figures showed zero percent growth compared with the first quarter.
Germany, the bloc’s economic powerhouse, performed worse than expected. Its economy contracted by 0.2 percent. Foreign trade and investment were weak spots.
“Thank God we have seen a superb economic situation over the past few months and years. But it is obvious that the current situation will make things more difficult,” explained Fidel Helmer, a capital markets expert with Hauck & Aufhaeuser private bank.
France – the region’s second biggest economy – saw no growth in the quarter.
French Finance Minister Michel Sapin said the country was unlikely to meet its deficit target for this year.
Italy, which is the bloc’s third biggest economy, slid back into recession for the third time since 2008 with gross domestic product shrinking by 0.2 percent.