France's statistics agency Insee has lowered its forecast for economic growth this year to 1.1% from its previous estimate of 1.2% due to the "unpleasant surprise" of zero growth in the second quarter.

In the third quarter Insee has predicted France's gross domestic product (GDP) to expand by 0.2%, slower than the earlier 0.3$ forecast, and by 0.4% in the fourth quarter.

Regarding unemployment Insee estimated that the jobless rate would be stable at 10% in the second quarter, a slight decline of 0.1% from a year earlier.

The statistics agency's forecast is a bit more optimistic than its last projections, counting on 10.1% unemployment at the end of the year, but that is still near the historic peak of 10.4% joblessness in 1997.