UPDATE 1-Mexico economy expands in January, but services slip

martes 25 de marzo de 2014 10:47 GYT

(Adds details on sectors, background)

MEXICO CITY, March 25 (Reuters) - Mexico's economy expanded in January as industry grew at its fastest pace in nearly a year, the national statistics agency said on Tuesday, but a slight contraction in the services sector pointed to sluggish growth.

Mexico's economy grew 0.09 percent in January from December at a seasonally adjusted pace, up from a slightly revised 0.26 percent contraction in December.

The services sector shrank 0.07 percent in January compared to the prior month, its second monthly drop in a row, while industry grew 0.51 percent, month-on-month, at its fastest pace since February 2013.

Mexican economic growth sank to a four-year low of 1.1 percent last year on a downturn in factory output and construction, while wavering U.S. demand for local exports and weak consumption have cast doubt on the strength of a recovery this year.

The economy expanded 0.83 percent compared to January of 2013, down from the 1.11 percent annual expansion seen in December. (Reporting by Michael O'Boyle; Editing by Chris Reese)