Following a period of uncertainty due to the general elections in France, economic players were reassured by the outcome in favour of Emmanuel Macron and the measures promised by his government, some of which are already being implemented. French GDP grew by 0.5% in Q1 2017 and forecasts for the year stand at 1.6%.
Unemployment, now under the 10% threshold, finally seems to have reversed its rising trend, a factor influencing the consumer sentiment index, which has returned to its long-term average. The business climate is also looking more positive, driven in particular by the car sector. In parallel, the rise in spending power generated by low inflation led to a rise in actual spending in 2016.