The European economy contracted in the second quarter by 11.9 percent compared to the first quarter of this year. This is reported by statistics agency Eurostat. It is the largest decline since Eurostat started measuring in 1995. There was also a contraction in the first quarter, which is now in recession.
If the economy in the second quarter is compared to the same period last year, the damage is even more serious, -14.4 percent. The cause is of course the outbreak of COVID-19 and the subsequent lockdown measures that were introduced.
Looking only at the eurozone, there is a decrease of 12.1 percent compared to the previous quarter. Eurostat adds that these are preliminary figures.
On Thursday it was announced that Germany, the largest economy in Europe, had an unprecedented shrinkage of 10.1 percent. Belgium, France and Spain also performed poorly, with -12.2, -13.8 and -18.6 percent respectively. Specific figures for the Netherlands are not yet available, Eurostat reports.
European economy in recession
The economy in Europe also shrank in the first quarter. At the time, it was still somewhat limited to a drop of 3.2 percent in the EU. As there was also a decline in the second quarter, the European economy has officially entered a recession.
The contraction in Europe is not as bad as in the United States. It was announced there on Thursday that the economy had shrunk by a staggering 32.9 percent in the second quarter compared to the same period last year.
Prices rose slightly in Europe
At the same time, Eurostat also released figures on inflation. This amounted to 0.4 percent in July. Among other things, prices for food, alcohol and tobacco went up, while prices for energy fell sharply.