Europe has 'de-coupled from rest of world economy'

Two of the eurozone's core economies have fallen into recession, according to the latest economic figures.

Italy and the Netherlands both saw their economies shrink by 0.7% in the fourth quarter, the second consecutive quarters of economic contraction.

Germany reported its first negative quarter since 2009 with a decline of 0.2% in the final three months of last year.

But in France there was surprise growth of 0.2% at the end of last year.

Peter de Keyzer is the chief economist at BNP Paribas Fortis. He told the BBC that ''Europe has de-coupled from the rest of the world economy in a bad way''.

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