France Slips Back Into Recession

    Street hawkers wait in front of the Eilffel Tower on Trocadero Square on May 14, 2013 in Paris. Paris's image, already tarnished by alarm over recent tourist muggings, has taken a further bashing after violence during a trophy parade to mark Paris Saint-Germain's first French League win in 19 years. The shock violence occurred late Monday after up to 15,000 PSG fans, who had thronged the esplanade at Trocadero by the iconic Eiffel Tower to mark the victory, turned unruly and attacked tourists and others in the heart of the city. AFP PHOTO / FRED DUFOUR        (Photo credit should read FRED DUFOUR/AFP/Getty Images)

    Near Eiffel Tower on Paris on Tuesday. (Fred Dufour/AFP/Getty)

    Maybe the French should have stopped protesting gay marriage and instead gone to work or bought some stuff. France slipped back into a recession as the entire euro-zone economy shrank more than expected in the first quarter of 2013, according to European Union data released Wednesday. France’s economy shrunk by 0.2 percent, its first decline in four years, and officials worried that France will continue to fall further behind throughout the year if it can only keep up the current pace. Germany, the largest economy in Europe, posted modest growth after suffering a sharp decline in the last quarter of 2012, with the EU Statistical Office commending Germany for “slowly picking up steam.” But things were especially bleak for Italy, the third-largest economy in Europe: its economy shrunk by 0.5 percent, putting the economy in recession for its seventh straight quarter.

    Read it at Reuters