International: Global Scenario

Growth
Euro Area’s gross domestic product expanded 1.8 percent year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2016, the same pace as in the previous period.

Prices
Consumer prices in the Euro Area are expected to increase 1.8 percent year-on-year in January of 2017, following a 1.1 percent rise in December. This rate is the highest since February of 2013. Inflation was boosted by fuel prices. Excluding energy, food, alcohol and tobacco, core inflation is expected to remain steady at 0.9 percent. Historically, the inflation rate in the Euro Area averaged 2 percent from 1991 until 2017, reaching an all time high of 5 percent in July of 1991 and a record low of -0.70 percent in July of 2009.

Employment
The jobless rate in the Euro Area declined to 9.6 percent in December of 2016 from a downwardly revised 9.7 percent in November. It is the lowest unemployment rate since May of 2009. A year earlier, the rate stood at 10.5 percent. Historically, the unemployment rate in the Euro Area averaged 9.79 percent from 1995 until 2016, reaching an all time high of 12.10 percent in April of 2013 and a record low of 7.20 percent in March of 2008. The number of employed persons In the Euro Area increased to 153.45 Million in the third quarter of 2016 from 153.13 Million in the second quarter of 2016.

Interest rate
The European Central Bank held its benchmark refinancing rate at 0 percent for the eighth straight time and left the pace of its bond-purchases unchanged on January 19th.

Trade
The Eurozone trade surplus rose to €25.9 billion in November 2016. Exports increased 6 percent while imports went up at a slower 5 percent.

Exchange rate
The EURUSD decreased 0.0039 or 0.36% to 1.0660 on Thursday February 9 from 1.0698 in the previous trading session

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