Strong exports boost German machine-tool sector: VDMA

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A rise in orders from the eurozone gave Germany's key mechanical engineering sector a boost in December, the industry federation said on Tuesday.

Incoming orders rose by 4.0 percent in December compared to the same month in 2011, the VDMA association said, with foreign orders jumping by 5.0 percent and domestic orders edging up 1.0 percent.

"In December, incoming orders returned to the positive growth rates seen in September and October. This time, momentum in foreign orders came primarily from partner countries in the euro area," said VDMA chief economist Ralph Wiechers.

"By contrast, domestic orders are looking a bit thin on an annual basis," he added.

Taking a three-month comparison to iron out short-term fluctuations, overall orders were up 3.0 percent in the period from October to December, with foreign orders up 4.0 percent but domestic orders slipping by 1.0 percent, VDMA calculated.

Looking at 2012 as a whole, overall orders fell by 3.0 percent, with domestic orders falling by 8.0 percent, but foreign orders held steady, VDMA added.

© 2013 AFP

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