German exports gain 24.2% in January
German exports gained a solid 24.2 percent in January over the last 12 months, official but provisional figures released on Thursday showed, pushing the country's trade surplus higher.
The value of German exports rose to 78.5 billion euros ($108.7 billion), the Destatis office said, a sign of sustained strength in Europe's biggest economy, while imports gained 24.1 percent to 68.4 billion euros.
That pushed the national trade surplus up to 10.1 billion euros, from 8.1 billion in January 2010, Destatis said, below an average analyst forecast of 12.0 billion euros compiled by Dow Jones Newswires.
Germany is the world's second biggest exporter, behind China.
Destatis said that compared with December 2010, exports fell by 1.0 percent in January while imports were 2.3 percent stronger.
Some of Germany's eurozone partners allege that its persistent trade surplus comes at their expense because the country does not consume enough of their goods, but the rise in the value of imports this time was likely due to higher oil prices.
Figures provided by the German central bank showed the current balance of payments account, a broader picture of trade in goods and services along with financial transfers, showed a surplus of 7.2 billion euros in January.
One year earlier it stood at 5.6 billion euros.
© 2011 AFP