Despite falling slightly short of earlier estimates, growth in the eurozone remained resilient in the fourth quarter of 2016, revealed the latest Eurostat data on Tuesday.
Eurostat, the European Union's statistics agency said growth in the eurozone was at around 0.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016, contrary to earlier estimates of 0.5 percent, made on Jan. 31. The figures showed that recovery in Europe remains on pace, in face of the significant unknowns after Brexit and the policies of the new Trump administration in the United States.
The data still meant that the eurozone economy grew by 1.7 percent in 2016, exceeding that of the U.S., which saw growth of around 1.6 percent last year. The 28-member EU as a whole grew by 1.8 percent, Eurostat said.
Faster growth came on a spike in consumer demand in France and Spain, while Germany's export-driven economy remained on a solid course. The Spanish economy grew by 3.0 percent in 2016, while Germany experienced a 1.8 percent growth, Eurostat confirmed.
Greece, which was once more making headlines over debt troubles, last year slipped out of recession, growing by 0.3 percent. The growth spurt will put pressure on the European Central Bank (ECB) to scale back its controversial stimulus measures. The ECB, led by its chief Mario Draghi, is at pains to stress that despite the series of positive economic signals, it may be too early to pull back on the program.
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