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ECB sees modest but positive euro zone growth in second half

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FILE PHOTO: Headquarters of the European Central Bank (ECB) is seen illuminated with a giant euro sign at the start of the "Luminale, light and building" event in Frankfurt
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FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The euro zone economy will continue to grow in the second half of the year, even if only modestly, boosted by private consumption and a small growth in employment, the European Central Bank said in an Economic Bulletin on Thursday.

"Incoming data and survey results point to moderate but positive economic growth in the second half of 2019," the ECB said in the bulletin, which is largely consistent with its October policy statement. "This growth pattern can be primarily attributed to weak global trade and prolonged uncertainties."

With growth slowing, the ECB approved a stimulus package in September, cutting rates deeper into negative territory, promising low rates for even longer and starting indefinite asset buys to lower long-term borrowing costs.

"Risks to the global economy remain to the downside amid a further escalation of trade disputes, high uncertainty related to Brexit and a potentially slower recovery in a number of emerging market economies," the ECB added.

(Reporting by Balazs Koranyi; Editing by Alex Richardson)