Spanish economy contracts further

MADRID: Spain's recession-hit economy shrank further in the second quarter, down by 1.0 percent from the first three months of the year, official data showed Friday.

Compared to the same period last year, the gross domestic product contracted by 4.1 percent, the National Statistics Institute said in preliminary figures.

It was the fourth quarterly contraction in a row after a fall of 1.9 percent in the first three months of the year, 1.0 percent in the three months to December and 0.3 percent in the third quarter of 2008.

Spain remains mired in its first recession for 15 years, which began at the end of 2008 as the global credit crunch worsened a correction which was already underway in its once booming housing sector.

In contrast, Germany, France, Portugal and Sweden Thursday announced a surprise rebound out of recession, helping drag the 16-nation eurozone back towards positive territory in a further sign a global economic recovery is taking hold.