Mar 3, 2015 4:21 AM

Swiss economy stronger than expected in 4th quarter

The Associated Press

BERLIN (AP) Official data show that Switzerland's economy expanded by a stronger-than-expected 0.6 percent in the fourth quarter, the last before the country's central bank abandoned its effort to cap the Swiss franc's value against the euro.

Economists had expected growth of 0.3 percent compared with the previous quarter. The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs said Tuesday private and public spending helped fuel the economy, while a drop in imports outpaced a 1-percent export slide.

Switzerland's economy grew 2 percent in 2014 as a whole.

Switzerland is surrounded by countries that use the euro. The Jan. 15 decision to abandon a currency peg against the euro has raised fears of a major hit to Swiss exports.

UniCredit economist Martina von Terzi forecast a 0.7 percent first-quarter drop in gross domestic product.


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