RTTNews - French household consumption rose more than expected in June, adding to signs that the recession is abating, official figures showed Wednesday.

Household consumption rose 1.4% month-on-month in June, taking the annual increase to 1.2%, data released by the INSEE showed. Economists had expected a relatively small monthly growth of 0.4% in June following a drop of 0.2% in May.

Elsewhere, French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde told France 2 television that spending figures are better than expected.

Citing the recent recovery in industrial production and auto sector, she said there are some encouraging signs in the economy.

French industrial output unexpectedly rose 2.6% month-on-month in May as production of coke and refined petroleum logged strong increase together with a rise in manufacture of transport equipment.

Compared to May, households spent 1.3% more on durables in June, of which, expenditure on household durables recovered by 3%. Recovery was seen in expenditure on textile-leather products and that on other manufactured goods.

However, spending on automobiles fell 0.2% after showing increases in previous months. Spending on automobiles has picked up in recent months due to government's incentive scheme.

In the second quarter, consumer spending was up 0.7% over the first quarter, led by car purchases.

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