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Spanish GDP grows 0.7% in spite of government vacuum

Staff Writer |
The Spanish economy continues to fight off political uncertainty to maintain solid growth, expanding by 0.7% in the latest quarter.

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The figures released by the National Statistics Institute showed a steady maintenance of growth during the third quarter, as acting prime minister Mariano Rajoy prepares to form a minority government following 10 months of impasse.

Each of the previous three quarters had seen growth of 0.8%, and although the figure for Q3 is marginally down, further political stability should aid expansion over the coming quarters.

On Thursday the statistics office also announced that the country's employment rate had dropped below 20% for the first time in the last six years, since a property crash in 2008 crippled Spain into recession.

Rajoy's Popular Party won the most seats in elections in December last year and June of this year, but failed to gain the majority needed to form a government.

Negotiations between the political parties in the region were fruitless, until a mini-revolution in the Socialist party's ranks led to an abstention on their part, paving the way for Rajoy to govern.

Annual expansion in the economy is expected to surpass 3% this year, before slowing to 2.3% in 2017.

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