Italy’s industrial sector notched up another month of growth in March but output moderated as the eurozone’s third largest economy builds up steady growth momentum after years of stagnancy.

Monthly output rose 0.4 per cent in March, down from the 1 per cent growth in month prior but came in just ahead of a forecast of 0.3 per cent. Industry accounts for just under a fifth of the Italian economy.

Over the first quarter as a whole the sector still contracted 0.3 per cent – driven largely by a steep 2.2 per cent decline at the start of the year. Shrinking output matches the performance in France at the start of the year, where overall production was also down 0.3 per cent.

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