German official industrial output falls 0.7 percent

7th January 2011, Comments 0 comments

German industrial production slipped a surprising 0.7 percent in November from the October level, the economy ministry said on Friday, adding that this should not undermine solid economic recovery.

Analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires had expected a smaller decline of 0.2 percent in Germany which has the biggest economy in Europe.

But "given a strong level of orders, the trend (higher in industrial output) should continue in the coming months," and results for the fourth quarter of 2010 should be positive as well, a ministry statement said.

The figure given on Friday was provisional and the ministry revised its initial number for October output slightly higher to a gain of 3.0 percent from 2.9 percent previously.

It also calculates industrial production on a sliding two-month basis to even out exceptional events, and that showed an increase of 2.2 percent in October and November compared with August/September.

On Thursday, official data showed that industrial orders in November were five times higher than expected owing to sustained demand worldwide for German goods such as chemicals, machine tools and vehicles.

The national statistics office reported earlier on Friday a strong 21.7-percent increase in exports in November, reaching a level last seen just after the collapse of the US investment bank Lehman Brothers in 2008.

Germany is the world's second-biggest exporter after China.

Imports leapt by an even bigger 33.3 percent meanwhile, in part owing to higher global prices for oil and other commodities.

© 2011 AFP

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