Italian industrial output was stronger than expected in July, rising 0.8% from the month before following a 1.1% increase in June, data showed on Friday.
A Reuters survey of 18 analysts had pointed to a 0.1% monthly uptick.
The data gets the third quarter off to a solid start, confirming recent encouraging signs in the euro zone’s third largest economy, which expanded by a stronger-than-expected 2.7% in the second quarter from the previous three months.
June’s industrial output was revised up marginally from an originally reported 1.0% increase.
On a work-day adjusted year-on-year basis, industrial output was up 7.0% in July, ISTAT said. June’s rate was revised down marginally to 13.8% from a previously reported 13.9%.
In the three months to July, output was up 0.6% compared with the February-to-April period, ISTAT said.
July saw month-on-month rises for output of consumer goods, investment goods and intermediate goods, ISTAT said, only partly offset by a decline in output of energy products.
The Italian economy, hobbled by the coronavirus, contracted by 8.9% last year, the steepest fall in gross domestic product since World War Two..
The second quarter of this year saw a strong 2.7% quarter-on-quarter rise, following a 0.2% gain in the first quarter.
This year, Mario Draghi’s government officially forecasts a full-year rebound of 4.5%, but recent data has been positive and government officials say growth of around 6% now looks likely.
Photo: A worker wearing with gloves, protective glasses and mask, works in an Alcantara production plant in Nera Montoro, Italy. EPA-EFE/CLAUDIO PERI