RTTNews - Wednesday, official data showed that the German annual inflation rate reached the lowest level since 1987 on easing energy and food prices. French industrial production dropped faster than expected in April due to widespread contraction in all industrial sub-sectors, especially in the manufacture of petroleum products.

Out of the euro area, British manufacturing output recorded growth for the second straight month in April signaling that the economy is on the road to a gradual recovery.

Germany's annual inflation remained flat in May, following April's 0.7%, a final report from the Federal Statistical Office showed. A year ago, the rate was 3%. Month-on-month, the consumer price index was down 0.1% versus a zero reading in the previous month.

In a separate report, the German statistical office said there were 7,712 enterprise insolvencies and 24,106 consumer insolvencies in the first quarter.

Moreover, the statistical office said Germany's real manufacturing turnover decreased a working day adjusted 23.2% year-over-year in April, compared with a 22% fall in the previous month.

Data released by the French statistical office INSEE showed that industrial production fell 1.4% month-on-month in April after falling a revised 1.7% in March. Economists had forecast the pace of decline in industrial output to slow to 0.2% in April.

Spain's National Statistics Institute said the consumer price index or CPI declined 0.9% year-on-year in May after falling 0.2% in April. The annual decline in the CPI was the third in a row and the biggest since the series started in 1962.

Italy's seasonally adjusted industrial production rose 1.1% month-on-month in April, statistical office Istat said. Production rose for the first time in a year.

Later, the Istat revised its preliminary estimate for the first quarter economic performance to show a contraction of 2.6% from a 2.4% fall.

The Statistics Finland said in a report that the industrial output dropped a working day adjusted 21% year-on-year in April, after a 16.6% fall in March.

Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia announced that the industrial production decreased 24.9% year-over-year in April, compared with an 18.5% fall in the previous month.

Austria's gross domestic product or GDP contracted by a revised 2.6% sequentially in the first quarter, faster than a 0.4% fall in the fourth quarter, the Austrian Institute of Economic Research or WIFO said.

Cyprus recorded a trade deficit of EUR359.8 million in April, down from a deficit of EUR425.7 million in the previous month, the country's Statistical Service said.

Luxembourg's National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies announced that the consumer prices declined 0.29% year-over-year in May, compared to the 0.27% increase in the previous month.

Belgium's economy will contract 3.5% this year after rising 1% in 2008, the National Bank of Belgium predicted. That was a downward revision from a 1.9% fall predicted in February.

Rest of Europe

U.K.'s Office for National Statistics said manufacturing output rose 0.2% in April from the previous month, slightly more than the expected 0.1% increase. The statistical office revised the initial decline estimated for March to a 0.2% increase, which turned out to be the first growth in manufacturing output since February 2008.

Separately, the ONS said U.K.'s visible trade deficit rose to GBP 7 billion in April from a deficit of GBP 6.5 billion in March. Economists had forecast the shortfall to contract to GBP 6.4 billion.

The Statistics Denmark said the CPI climbed 1.3% year-on-year in May, slower than a 1.4% rise in April.

According to a report from the Statistics Norway, consumer price annual inflation rose to 3% in May from 2.9% in April. Economists were expecting the annual rate to stay at 2.9%. Meanwhile, producer prices declined 2.9% year-on-year in May, after a 4.7% fall in April.

Consumer prices in Romania rose 5.95% year-on-year in May, the National Institute of Statistics said.

The Statistics Sweden announced that the industrial production dropped 21.2% year-over-year in April, compared to the 22.1% decline in March, revised from 22.9% fall reported initially.

The Turkish Statistical Institute said the capacity utilization rate in manufacturing stood at 70.4% in May, up from 66.8% in April.

Bulgaria's GDP dropped 3.5% year on-year in the first quarter, after rising 3.5% in the fourth quarter, the National Statistical Institute said. Separately, the agency announced that the industrial production decreased 20% year-over-year in April.

In central bank actions, Kazakhstan's central bank lowered its refinancing rate by 50 basis points to 8.5% from 9% to shore-up the crisis-hit economy.

The Executive Board of the Riksbank decided to borrow EUR 3 billion from the European Central Bank for safeguarding financial stability.

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