August 6, 2020

Eurozone suffers deepest contraction on record

(BBC) – Spain has been plunged into its deepest recession in modern times by the coronavirus pandemic.

Its economy shrank by 18.5% in the April-to-June period, having already fallen by 5.2% in the first three months of the year.

The country was the worst performer in the eurozone, which saw its overall GDP decline by a record 12.1%.

France’s economy has also been badly hit, with GDP there falling by 13.8% in the second quarter.

The French statistics agency said the low point had come in April, with a gradual recovery in May and June as lockdown restrictions eased, but economic activity was still well below normal.

Italy, which was among the first European countries to be hit by the pandemic, has reported a similar drop, with the economy contracting by 12.4%. However, the fall was less steep than expected.

Across the EU, the economic contraction was 11.9%.

The official Eurostat agency said the falls were the largest since it began recording the figures in 1995.