Portuguese Economy Expands More Than Forecast as Exports Rise

Portugal’s gross domestic product expanded more than economists expected in the three months through March, recording the fastest pace of growth since the fourth quarter of 2013 as exports increased.

GDP rose 1 percent from the fourth quarter, when it expanded a revised 0.7 percent, the Lisbon-based National Statistics Institute said in a preliminary report on Monday. Economists predicted a rise of 0.6 percent, the median of seven estimates in a Bloomberg survey showed. The economy expanded 2.8 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, the fastest pace of annual growth since 2007.

Prime Minister Antonio Costa was sworn in at the end of 2015 and his minority Socialist government has reversed state salary cuts faster than the previous administration proposed, while increasing indirect taxes. Tourism and exports have helped the economy, and the government in April forecast growth will accelerate to 1.8 percent this year.

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