Barely saved. After the surprise rebound in the second quarter, growth in France's gross domestic product (GDP) slowed to 0.1% in the third quarter, barely remaining in positive territory thanks to the rebound in household consumption, according to a first INSEE estimate published Tuesday.
This modest increase in GDP between July and September, in line with the forecast of the National Institute of Statistics, marks a clear slowdown compared to the growth of 0.6% recorded in the second quarter - INSEE revised it in increase of 0.1 point. For the whole of 2023, INSEE anticipates growth of 0.9%, identical to the Banque de France's forecast and a little below that of the government (1%).
After sluggishness, household consumption of goods and services increased by 0.7% in the third quarter, marked in particular by an increase in food consumption, in a context of easing inflation. Business investment continued to show dynamism (1.5%). On the other hand, after a dynamic second quarter, exports contracted by 1.4% over the period, so that the contribution of foreign trade to growth is negative. Manufacturing production also fell, by 0.3%, and that of market services slowed to 0.3%.
“Despite the degraded environment, French growth is holding up,” commented the Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire immediately. “Growth is positive even though interest rates are high,” he also underlined. Confident, the minister assured that France will achieve the objective of “1% growth planned by the government” for 2023. Bruno Le Maire also expressed his satisfaction to see “household growth is restarting and that business investment increases.