German industry steams ahead: official data
German industrial output powered ahead in May, official data showed on Thursday, further evidence that Europe's top economy is recovering from recession, helped by strong Asian demand and a weaker euro.
Production rose by a better-than-expected 2.6 percent from the level in April, the economy ministry said, offering some cheer after industrial orders posted a surprise drop Wednesday.
The figures smashed the expectations of analysts surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires who forecast a rise of 1.0 percent.
Last month, production rose by 1.2 percent, the ministry said, upwardly revising its initial estimate of 0.9 percent.
The data cap a strong day for the German economic powerhouse, after export figures showed the biggest annual jump in 10 years.
Germany was battered hard by the global financial crisis, with gross domestic product (GDP) shrinking by 4.9 percent in 2009, its sharpest decline in more than six decades.
But the economy has bounced back faster than most people expected, with Berlin forecasting growth of 1.4 percent this year and several international institutions predicting even better figures.
© 2010 AFP