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Eurozone recovery signs few and far between

LONDON (AP) -- A run of economic figures for the 17 European Union countries that use the euro all showed the same thing — growth remains elusive.

While Eurostat confirmed Wednesday that the eurozone as a whole — and nine of its 17 members — were in recession at the end of the first quarter, a separate survey from the statistics office showed retail sales falling a monthly 0.5 percent in April.

And the monthly survey of sentiment from financial information company Markit pointed to a further contraction in activity during May.

The figures paint a fairly grim picture just as the European Central Bank's governing council prepares to discuss what to do to get the ailing eurozone economy growing again. Thursday's policy decision is not expected to yield much, or anything, exciting.