10 May 2006, 11:36  French March industrial output up 1.6 pct from Feb

Seasonally-adjusted French industrial output rebounded strongly in March, rising 1.6 pct on the month after a 1.2 pct fall in February, according to data from the Insee statistics office. The consensus estimate of economists polled by AFX News was for a month-on-month rise of 0.9 pct. Insee said the February figure was revised from a provisional 0.9 pct fall. Manufacturing output, which excludes food and energy, was also up 1.6 pct in March, compared with a 1.2 pct fall in February. Economists had forecast a 1.0 pct rise for this component. Food output in March was up 0.7 pct on the month after a rise of 0.4 pct in February, while for consumer goods output rose 0.8 pct in March after declining 0.2 pct in February. Automobile output rose 2.1 pct in March after dropping 4.1 pct in February, and capital goods production was rose 2.8 pct in March after falling 1.6 pct in February. Intermediate goods output rose 1.0 pct in March, compared with a decline of 0.7 pct in February, while energy output was up 2.0 pct, following a 1.5 pct drop the month before.

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