Argentine July economic activity up 5.1 pct year/year


BUENOS AIRES, Sept 27 (Reuters) - Argentinas economic activity increased by 5.1 percent in July compared with same month last year, the government said on Friday, a hair shy of market expectations.

Analysts polled by Reuters had expected a 5.2 rise in the monthly EMAE economic activity index, which is a close proxy for gross domestic product.

The INDEC statistic office also said in a statement that July economic activity contracted 1.2 percent compared with June.

Argentina's gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by 8.3 percent in the second quarter compared with the same period in 2012, and was up 2.6 percent from the first quarter of this year, INDEC said earlier this month.

President Cristina Fernandez has prioritized economic growth ahead of October mid-term elections that will determine the make up of Congress during what will be her final two years in office.

She has used extra government spending to temporarily ease the negative effects of currency and capital controls imposed after she started her second term in 2011.

Argentine GDP is expected to grow 5.1 percent in 2013, triggering billions of dollars in payments on growth-linked government bonds, as a big grain and oilseed harvest along with the automobile industry boosts activity.