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French economy slows in Q2

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French economy slows in Q2

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France’s economy slowed for the first time in three years between April and June, with a dip in consumer spending being blamed.

The adjustment comes in the third and final growth estimate by INSEE, the national statistics agency.

Previously it had said there had been no expansion in the second quarter; now it calculates the economy shrank by 0.1 percent.

The contraction in the eurozone’s second largest economy came after robust growth of 0.7 percent in the January to March period.

The latest numbers are a blow to President Francois Hollande who has insisted that the economy is getting stronger ahead of a presidential election due next April.

This comes just days after the Finance Ministry announced its budget for 2017 based on a projection of 1.5 percent growth for this year and next.

That budget included pledges of tax cuts and extra spending on defence and security as well as job training programmes for young people.

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