Portuguese economy expands at slower pace

Portugal’s gross domestic product (GDP) expanded in the three months through September at a slower pace than in the second quarter.

GDP rose 0.2 percent from the second quarter, when it expanded 0.3 percent, as household spending increased, show data from the National Statistics Institute. GDP rose 1 percent from a year earlier, a fourth consecutive increase.

While Portugal emerged from recession in 2013, Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho still has to cut spending to meet budget targets and the government forecasts exports and investment will help drive growth next year.

Portugal in May exited a three-year bailout programme from the European Union and International Monetary Fund without the safety net of a precautionary credit line.

The Portuguese government in August cut its forecast for economic growth and now sees GDP expanding 1 percent this year. It projects growth of 1.5 percent in 2015.

The country’s jobless rate dropped for a sixth quarter to 13.1 percent in the third quarter, the statistics institute said on November 5.