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(Reuters) - Stronger growth in the euro zone's two largest economies, Germany and France, helped the euro zone to emerge from its longest recession to date in the second quarter, confirming expectations a fragile recovery was under way.
Confirming a fragmented picture of the rebound, Spain's economy fell by 0.1 percent on the quarter, while Italy and the Netherlands both dropped by 0.2 percent.
The European Central Bank has predicted a deeper than expected slump in the eurozone economy as its president, Mario Draghi, said the institution had discussed negative interest rates in a bid to kickstart growth.
The ECB said the economy of the euro’s 17 members will shrink by 0.6% this year compared with the previous forecast of a 0.5% decline. However, the bank was more optimistic about 2014, inching up its growth forecast from 1% to 1.1%.