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French central bank sees growth in 2010

PARIS, April 8 – French central bank governor Christian Noyer said Wednesday he expected the French economy to return to growth in 2010.

"My feeling is that there are good reasons for the economy to progressively stabilise, to stop its decline by the end of the year and to begin growing again starting in 2010," Noyer told BFM radio.

The Banque of France expects gross domestic product to drop 0.8 percent in the first quarter of 2009.

Recent cuts in the European Central Bank\’s interest rate, stimulus measures and the knock off effect of disinflation on consumer spending were among the factors fuelling recovery, Noyer said.

The central bank chief also dismissed suggestions that inflation could soar in the coming months, saying "I absolutely don\’t believe it."

Economy Minister Christine Lagarde has also said she expects the French economy to return to growth in 2010, expanding 1.0 percent after shrinking 1.5 percent this year.

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