Portugal's Third-Quarter GDP Stagnates, Missing Estimates

Portugal’s gross domestic product stagnated in the three months through September, missing estimates and ending a sequence of five consecutive quarters of growth.

GDP was unchanged from the second quarter, when it expanded 0.5 percent, as investment fell while net external demand “contributed positively,” the Lisbon-based National Statistics Institute said on its website today. Economists predicted a rise of 0.4 percent, the median of 10 estimates in a Bloomberg survey showed. The economy expanded 1.4 percent from a year earlier, an eighth increase.

The government forecasts the economy will grow 1.6 percent in 2015 and then accelerate in the following two years. The statistics institute on Nov. 4 said the unemployment rate was 11.9 percent in the third quarter, also unchanged from the previous three months.

Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho’s government, now in a caretaker role, tried to promote an export-led recovery and planned to ease austerity measures at a slower pace than the Socialists, which joined with other opposition parties to oust the government on Tuesday. Coelho won elections on Oct. 4, though his coalition fell short of the majority that helped him lead Portugal through a bailout program from the European Union and International Monetary Fund in his first term.

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