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Slovak Economy Grows at Slowest Pace Since 2009 Recession

The Slovak economy expanded at the slowest pace since the country emerged from the 2009 recession because of slowing export demand and rising unemployment.

Gross domestic product grew a preliminary 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter from the same period a year ago compared with a 2.1 percent expansion in the previous quarter, the statistics office said on its website today. In quarterly terms, the economy expanded a seasonally adjusted 0.2 percent, down from 0.3 percent in the third quarter.

Slovakia, which adopted the euro four years ago, relies on demand from western Europe to maintain growth. Boosted earlier last year by an increase in car-industry capacity, the economy faces a slowdown as the euro-region’s debt crisis weakens exports and unemployment erodes purchasing power.

The number of jobs in the economy dropped a seasonally adjusted 0.5 percent in a year, compared with a 0.2 percent decline in the third quarter, the Bratislava, Slovakia-based office said.

The office didn’t provide a breakdown of growth. It will release a final detailed report on March 6.

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