ROME Aug 29 Italy's recession-hit economy is
unlikely to return to growth in the third quarter while
deflation is set to deepen over the next few months, national
statistics office ISTAT said in its latest monthly report on
ISTAT said data suggested that the economy, which fell into
recession with a contraction of 0.2 percent in the second
quarter, would "continue in its phase of stagnation for the
third quarter of 2014."
It estimated zero growth in the third quarter, with a
forecast range of between -0.2 percent and +0.2 percent.
ISTAT also said that consumer prices, which fell on an
annual basis for the first time in more than 50 years in August,
would continue to decline in the coming months before picking up
towards the end of the year.
(Reporting by James Mackenzie)