Pace of GDP decline slows in euro area
EURO area GDP contracted in the first three months of the year but the pace of decline was not as pronounced as in the final quarter of 2012.
Gross domestic product in the 17-strong eurozone slipped 0.2pc while GDP across Europe fell by 0.1pc, according to second estimates published by Europe's version of the Central Statistics Office, Eurostat.
It compares with a contraction of 0.6pc for the euro area in the final three months of last year and 0.5pc for all member states together. Data for Ireland was not available.
But retail sales fell in April, signalling that the contraction across the bloc still has some way to go.
Household spending rose in the first three months of the year in both the euro area and all member states, while exports decreased 0.8pc in the eurozone and imports fell 1.1pc.
Among the large economies, Germany saw marginal growth of 0.1pc and the UK by 0.3pc, while France contracted 0.2pc.
Retail trade in Ireland contracted by 0.8pc.