* Central bank estimates Q4 GDP growth of 0.5 percent
* November industrial output easily beats expectations
* One-off factors helped boost production figure
PARIS, Jan 10 French GDP is likely to have grown
strongly in the final quarter of last year and industrial output
surged in November, figures showed on Friday, marking a welcome
turnaround for the euro zone's second largest economy.
The Bank of France estimated growth reached 0.5 percent in
the fourth quarter from the previous one, signalling a strong
pick-up after a contraction of 0.1 percent in the three months
A solid improvement will be seized on by unpopular President
Francois Hollande, who has struggled to engineer an economic
revival in a country increasingly being labelled the laggard in
a time of nascent euro zone recovery.
The INSEE official statistics agency, due to give its
preliminary fourth quarter growth reading on Feb. 14, estimated
last month that the economy grew 0.4 percent over the period.
The central bank gave its third and final estimate for
fourth-quarter growth, unchanged from the previous projection,
in its monthly business survey.
The survey also showed morale in the industrial sector eased
back to its long-term average of 100 last month from 101 in
November while sentiment in the services sector was unchanged at
92, the central bank said.
In a sign the recovery is taking hold, panellists in both
sectors told the Bank of France that they expect activity to
rebound in January.
November industrial production data published on Friday
offered support to the Bank of France's view that the economy
gathered steam at the end of last year as output surged far more
INSEE said industrial production rose 1.3 percent in
November from the previous month, easily beating economists'
average forecast of a 0.4 percent rise.
However, much of the improvement was due to temporary
factors. Electricity production jumped as temperatures fell
after a particularly mild October and refining activity surged
as a plant came back on line after closure for maintenance,
Still, the data contrasted sharply with closely watched
purchasing managers surveys which have flagged a slowdown in
business activity in recent months.