PARIS (Reuters) - France's economy will expand 0.3 percent in the third quarter, returning to growth after stalling in the previous three-month period, the said on Monday in its first estimate for the period.

The central bank gave its estimate in its monthly business climate survey, in which it said industrial sector confidence picked up slightly in July, increasing by one point on the previous month to 98.

However confidence within the services sector dipped by a point to 96.

French economic growth stalled unexpectedly in the second quarter due to weak consumer spending and investment in a blow to President Francois Hollande's assertions that the economy is getting stronger.


(Reporting by Richard Lough; Editing by Geert De Clercq)

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