The Conference Board's index of leading economic indicators for France fell half a percentage point in May, the most recent month for which data are available. The index now stands at 104.9 (1990=100). The index declined two-tenths of a percentage point in March and one-tenth in April.
"The more widespread weakness in the growth rate of the leading index in recent months suggests that sluggish economic growth is likely to continue in the near term," says the New York-based business research group. The French economy grew at an annual rate of 1.4% during the first quarter of this year.