The euro area economy experienced its largest contraction in history in the first quarter of this year compared to the previous quarter, due to the coronavirus crisis.
On Friday, the EU statistics office, Eurostat, said that the GDP of the 19 euro-zone countries contracted 3.8% quarter on quarter, down 3.2% year-on-year. Eurostat added that this was the largest drop since the third quarter of 2009, when production in the euro area fell 4.5%.
France registered the largest quarterly contraction of 5.8%, followed by Slovakia with 5.4%, Spain with 5.2% and Italy with 4.7%. Germany experienced a 2.2% contraction. Finland is the only euro area country whose economy has managed to grow, but only by 0.1%.
The pandemic brought down eurozone exports by 6.2% in March. Imports fell 10.1% year on year.
Euro area employment fell 0.2% in the first quarter, bringing the year-over-year employment growth rate to 0.3% from 1.1% in the previous quarter.