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Market analysts expect 0.4 per cent growth from first quarter

FILE - In this July 31, 2012 file photo the euro sculpture stands in front of the headquarters of the European Central Bank, ECB, in Frankfurt, Germany. Official figures are expected to confirm that Europe’s recovery from recession gathered pace in the first three months of the year. But the recovery is filled with worries, so much so that the European Central Bank is poised to deliver stimulus measures that are more usual for economies mired in recession rather than those on the upswing. Figures on Thursday May 15, 2014 are expected to show that the economy of the 18 countries that use the euro expanded by 0.4 percent in the first quarter from the previous three-month period. That’s double the rate recorded in the previous quarter and would mark the third straight quarterly expansion. (AP Photo/Michael Probst, File)

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FILE - In this July 31, 2012 file photo the euro sculpture stands in front of the headquarters of the European Central Bank, ECB, in Frankfurt, Germany. Official figures are expected to confirm that Europe’s recovery from recession gathered pace in the first three months of the year. But the recovery is filled with worries, so much so that the European Central Bank is poised to deliver stimulus measures that are more usual for economies mired in recession rather than those on the upswing. Figures on Thursday May 15, 2014 are expected to show that the economy of the 18 countries that use the euro expanded by 0.4 percent in the first quarter from the previous three-month period. That’s double the rate recorded in the previous quarter and would mark the third straight quarterly expansion. (AP Photo/Michael Probst, File)

FRANKFURT - Official figures are expected to show that the recovery in Europe is gaining strength despite worries about low inflation.

Economists expect figures Thursday from the European Union statistics agency Eurostat to show that the 18-country eurozone economy grew by a quarterly rate of 0.4 per cent in the first three months of the year.

Despite the growth, the eurozone is still suffering from high unemployment of 11.8 per cent and concerns that inflation is too low at 0.7 per cent. Low inflation makes it harder for governments to reduce debt levels.

European Central Bank head Mario Draghi has said the bank's governing council is "comfortable" with taking further action at its June 5 meeting. That could include a cut in the bank's benchmark interest rate of 0.25 per cent.

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