PARIS (AP) -- The French economy is officially out of recession, with its strongest quarterly growth in two years.
The national statistics agency, Insee, said Wednesday that France's gross domestic product rose 0.5 percent in the second quarter, largely on a rebound in exports, domestic household demand and public spending. The figure was well above the consensus forecast of 0.1 percent and even the more optimistic Banque de France prediction of 0.2 percent growth.
Insee says the April-to-June growth was the strongest quarterly growth since early 2011, when Europe's debt crisis exploded, forcing governments to cut spending and dragging many economies into recession.
France, Europe's second-largest economy, has fared better than many, but its growth has been stagnant for two years. GDP shrank 0.2 percent for each of the last two quarters.