German official industrial orders jump by 5.2 percent
German industrial orders leapt in November by surprise 5.2 percent from the level in the previous month, official data showed on Wednesday in a sign that the economy should remain robust in coming months.
Analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires had forecast a monthly increase of 1.0 percent following a rise of 1.6 percent in October, but the figures also revealed a worrying slump in orders from other eurozone countries.
Germany has the biggest economy in Europe.
A breakdown of the economy ministry data indicated that most of the demand came from abroad, with an increase of 8.2 percent, while domestic orders gained a more modest 1.5 percent.
But orders from eurozone partners declined by 1.4 percent, which could suggest the now 17-nation bloc is headed for a two or three-speed recovery.
Core countries such as France and Germany appear set for solid growth this year while others could stagnate or even slip back as austerity measures take effect and consumption is curtailed.
The German central bank has forecast growth of 2.0 percent in 2011, with unemployment expected to decline further and business investment tipped to profit from ultra low interest rates.
In Brussels meanwhile, a key European Union indicator showed that confidence in the entire crisis-hit eurozone rose in December, pulled by strong readings in France and Germany.
© 2011 AFP