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Economy in Brief

French Industrial Output Up Sharply in February
by Robert Brusca April 10, 2007

French industrial output was up especially strong rising by 1.1% and led by a 1.2% increase in the output of consumer goods. EU IP trends have been soft recently. Even Germany where conditions have been rather solid has showed some weakness in consumer goods output; of course Germany may still be fighting its way though some VAT effects early in the year. With this strong gain in February, France at least shows that one large EU country has some solid output growth in consumer goods. This has been led by autos where output is up by a strong 4.7% spurt in February alone.

For France the chart now shows some building momentum trends in place as the 3-mo growth rate is rising sharply and the six month pace is firming along with the Yr/Yr pace.

In February France demonstrates good growth across sectors. Auto output is especially strong. Consumer goods output is surprisingly robust as that sector had lagged. Capital goods output trends are simply steady and above the pace of 4%. Intermediate goods output has picked up in February.

French IP Excluding construction
SAAR except m/m Feb-07 Jan-07 Dec-06 3-mo  6-mo 12-mo
IP total 1.1% -0.2% 1.0% 7.7% 1.6% 2.6%
Consumer 1.2% 0.4% 0.0% 6.4% 2.9% 2.3%
Capital 0.3% 0.4% 0.5% 4.8% 4.4% 4.6%
Intermediary 1.3% -1.2% 1.4% 6.3% 1.2% 3.5%
Auto 4.7% 0.4% 1.5% 29.9% 3.9% 4.5%
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