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UPDATE 1-Bank of Mexico board member calls construction data 'very bad news'

·1-min read

(Recasts story, adds bank board member's comment, background)

MEXICO CITY, June 22 (Reuters) - Growth of just above 1% for Mexico's construction sector is "very bad news," a Bank of Mexico board member said on Tuesday, suggesting it should have grown by double digit figures as the economy rebounds from its pandemic-induced recession last year.

The construction sector grew by 1.2% in April from a year earlier, and contracted by 1.8% in the month versus March, data from the INEGI national statistics agency showed earlier in the day.

"In principle, most of the indicators should show high annual rates, in the two digits, as of April given the arithmetic effects of the comparative base," central bank board member Jonathan Heath said on Twitter.

The construction data contrasts with recent figures that paint a picture of an economic recovery gathering pace after gross domestic product fell by some 8.5% last year, the most since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

In fact, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Friday forecast that by the third quarter the economy would reach pre-pandemic levels.

Mexico's economy grew 24.8% in May compared with the same month last year, a preliminary estimate published by INEGI showed on Thursday. (Reporting by Anthony Esposito Editing by Marguerita Choy)

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