Italy Economy
Cars are parked at the Gioia Tauro commercial harbor on Nov. 8, 2012. Reuters/Alessandro Bianchi

The Italian economy stopped contracting in the third quarter of the year, and the country’s monthly industrial production, or IP, grew at a better-than-expected rate in October, data released on Tuesday showed.

Italy’s gross domestic product, or GDP, posted flat growth in the third quarter, against analysts’ expectations of a 0.1 percent contraction. The economy had shrunk by 0.1 percent in the previous quarter.

"From a technical point of view this data is not sufficient to say the recession is over," an ISTAT spokesman told Reuters. On a year-on-year basis, GDP fell 1.8 percent, revised up from the preliminary estimate of -1.9 percent.

Italy’s IP rose 0.5 percent month-on-month, against analysts’ expectations for the growth rate to hold steady at the previous month’s 0.2 percent. Meanwhile, the country's annual IP declined a less-than-expected 0.5 percent in October, after falling 2.9 percent in the previous month, data published by the statistical office, Istat, showed Tuesday.

In France, IP dropped unexpectedly while in the UK industrial production grew at a better-than-expected rate in October, data released by the respective countries showed, on Tuesday.

French industrial output dropped in October by 0.3 percent, same as an upwardly revised fall of 0.3 percent in the previous month, and against market expectations of a growth of 0.2 percent, data from Insee, the national statistics bureau, showed on Tuesday.

Output in the manufacturing sector rose by 0.4 percent, after falling 0.5 percent in September, but dropped by 1.1 percent on an annual basis, Insee added.

In the U.K., IP rose by 0.4 percent in October compared to a 0.9 percent growth in the previous month, and by 3.2 percent compared to a 2.2 percent growth rate in the same period last year, data released by the Office for National Statistics, or ONS, showed.

Analysts had expected IP to grow by 0.3 percent on a month-on-month basis and by 3.2 percent on an annual basis.

The nation’s factory production also increased by 0.4 percent month-on-month, in line with expectations, and was the largest contributor to total production growth, the ONS added.