France’s economy expanded for a fourth straight quarter, ending years of stop-start progress and giving President Emmanuel Macron momentum as he tries to push through crucial reforms.
The 0.5 percent expansion in the three months through June matched the pace of the previous two quarters and was driven by exports and investment. Net trade made the biggest contribution in more than seven years.
With political clouds having cleared thanks to Macron’s election win and tax cuts implemented by predecessor Francois Hollande taking hold, consumer confidence is near the highest in a decade, while business confidence is at the strongest level since 2011. Yet, economists warn that the long-delayed rebound won’t last unless the new 39-year-old president manages to successfully implement his economic reform program.