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Bank of France cuts Q1 GDP growth forecast to 0.3%

[PARIS] The French economy is set to grow 0.3 per cent in the first three months of the year, the central bank forecast on Wednesday, revising downwards its estimate of a month ago by 0.1 per centage points.

If confirmed, that would still mark a pick-up from the final quarter of last year, when the euro zone's second-biggest economy eked out 0.2 per cent growth.

The Bank of France offered the estimate in its monthly business sentiment survey, which showed morale in the industrial sector fell to 98 in February after reaching 101 in January - the highest since May 2011.

Meanwhile, the indicator for the services sector remained stable at 96 as the hotel and restaurant industries continued to suffer after the November jihadist attacks in Paris.

Business leaders expect both industrial and services activity to increase in March, the survey showed.


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