ISTAT ups Italy's GDP estimate for year to 1.2%

(ANSA) - Rome, August 31 - ISTAT on Friday upped its annual growth forecast for the Italian economy to 1.2% in the second quarter.
    This was higher than the 1.1% forecast on July 31.
    Italy's gross domestic product grew 0.2% in the second quarter of the year, ISTAT said Friday.
    The statistics agency published the definitive data for the April-June period.
    In the first quarter GDP had risen 0.3%.
    Italy's GDP is 5.8% lower than it was at the start of the financial crisis in 2008, ISTAT said Friday.
    The comparison is with the first quarter of 2008, when a record high was recorded.
    But despite a quarterly slowdown, ISTAT said, the Italian economy's expansion has continued for 16 straight quarters.