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French central bank bumps up 2017 growth forecast to 1.8 percent

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French central bank bumps up 2017 growth forecast to 1.8 percent

French central bank bumps up 2017 growth forecast to 1.8 percent
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PARIS (Reuters) – French growth has accelerated faster than expected this year thanks to surging business and household investment and could gain further steam if reforms bear fruit, the central bank said on Thursday.

Growth was seen reaching the fastest pace since 2011 this year at 1.8 percent, followed by 1.6-1.8 percent annually through to the end of the decade, the Bank of France said in a biannual update of its forecasts.

The central bank had previously estimated growth of 1.6 percent in 2017, 2018 and 2019 and its latest forecast for this year tops the 1.7 percent the expected by the government.

The French economy has surpassed most expectations this year, benefiting from a rebound in its main trade partners while consumer and business confidence has surged after the election of President Emmanuel Macron in May.

(Reporting by Leigh Thomas)

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