August 14, 2014 - 18:12 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Growth in the eurozone as a whole flatlined in the second quarter, official estimates revealed Thursday, Aug 14, according to BBC News.
The eurozone saw 0.0% growth compared with the first quarter, Eurostat figures showed. The economic bloc's two largest economies, France and Germany, both performed worse than expected.
Germany's Federal Statistics Office said the economy was "losing momentum". And official figures show the French economy saw no growth in the quarter.
Italy, the eurozone's third largest economy, fell back into recession. However, Portugal jumped from a 0.6% contraction in the first quarter to a 0.6% expansion in the second. Spain continued to recover, with 0.6% growth.
Meanwhile, annual inflation in the eurozone fell to 0.4% in July, its lowest rate since 2009.
German GDP contracted by 0.2% in the three months to the end of June, figures show, after growing by 0.7% in the first quarter.
The German Federal Statistics Office said that extremely mild weather at the beginning of the year had an effect on growth.
Christian Schulz, senior economist at Berenberg bank, said the contraction in the German economy was a "significant setback".
"It seems to be caused largely by weather," he said. "The mild winter this year means the usual spring recovery in construction didn't happen."
"Putin has an impact on confidence, and thus, investment, and also a little bit on exports," Schulz said.
While it is unlikely that economic sanctions on agricultural imports by Russia will have a direct effect on Germany in the third quarter, confidence may be knocked by instability in the region, he said.