• Germany's news in English

Industrial orders surge as economy rebounds

AFP · 6 May 2010, 18:13

Published: 06 May 2010 18:13 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The data released by the Economy Ministry was far better than expected by economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires who had forecast a rise of just 1.0 percent following flat figures in February compared to the previous month. The ministry said the growth was seen across a "broad front."

"That indicates a continuation and consolidation of the recovery process for industrial production," it said in a statement.

"Business confidence indicators, which also recently improved, also point in this direction."

The closely watched Ifo index last month showed business confidence in Germany rising sharply to a near two-year high. However retail data released Tuesday showing a 2.4-percent plunge in March raised fears that German gross domestic product had contracted in the first quarter of the year.

The data released Thursday said foreign demand for industrial products in Germany, the world's second largest exporter after China, rose 4.7 percent in March, with even stronger growth in orders at home of 5.4 percent.

Orders from the other 15 countries in the eurozone rose 9.6 percent in March from February, while orders from beyond the currency bloc gained 1.3 percent.

Economist Alexander Koch from UniCredit Group said Europe could take heart in the data.

"The latest jump in orders from the EMU neighbour countries, which still account for the bulk of German exports, confirm that, despite the Greek debt crisis and the feared contagion to other member countries, the revival in global industrial activity remains broad based," he said.

Demand for consumer goods, however, was weak, falling 1.9 percent in keeping with a long-term trend. Berlin has faced pressure from eurozone trade partners for policies that would boost imports from neighbours.

Analyst Carsten Brzeski of ING Bank said the figures marked an "impressive comeback."

Story continues below…

"After the weather-driven temporary dip at the turn of the year, at least the German manufacturing sector has picked up speed again," he said in a statement.

"Whether the pick-up came just in time to prevent another quarter of negative growth will only become clear next week with the first GDP estimate to be released."

Brzeski said he would also be looking to the release of March data on industrial production Friday to indicate whether Germany's economic "hibernation" had ended.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Germans think they're fit, but they're really couch potatoes
Photo: DPA.

There's been an increase in the number of Germans who define themselves as "fit", but their lifestyle choices don't quite match this self-perception.

10 fascinating facts you never knew about German beer
Tennis coach Boris Becker and his wife Lilly at Oktoberfest 2016 in Munich. Photo: DPA

From malt and monks to Radlers and rivalries, the story of German beer is as rich and wonderful as its selection.

Intensive farming 'endangers a third of German species'
Photo: DPA

There are 32,000 species of animal, plant and mushroom life native to Germany. Due to intensive farming methods, one in every three of these is endangered, a new report shows.

German hospital uses therapy to 'treat' paedophiles
A poster from the campaigne "Don't offend", which offers therapy to paedophiles. The sign reads "Do you love kids more than you'd prefer? There's help." Photo: DB Scholz & Friends / DPA.

A unique German initiative is offering therapy to paedophiles to control their urges, with the aim of getting them help before they offend.

Minister: 'no tolerance' for clowns after chainsaw attack
Photo: DPA

Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière has called for a zero-tolerance approach to 'killer clowns' after a series of attacks culminating in two teenagers being chased by a clown wielding a chainsaw.

Baby who was auctioned on eBay taken away from father
Photo: DPA.

A German court ruled on Thursday that a man who put his one-month-old baby up for sale on the online auction platform eBay should only be allowed contact with the child under supervision.

Portugal's ruling party calls German minister 'pyromaniac'
Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble. Photo: DPA.

The head of Portugal's ruling Socialists called German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble a "pyromaniac" on Thursday after he criticized Lisbon for reversing course on austerity.

These are Germany's top ten universities
The new library of Freiburg University. Photo: Jörgens.mi / Wikimedia Commons

These are the best universities in all of Germany - at least according to one ranking.

Introducing Swabians - 'the Scots of Germany'
Photo: DPA

These Southern Germans have quite a reputation in the rest of the country.

Woman sues dentist over job rejection for headscarf
Photo: DPA

A dentist in Stuttgart is being taken to court by a woman whom he rejected for a job as his assistant on the basis that she wears a Muslim headscarf.

10 German clichés that foreigners get very wrong
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
10 ways German completely messes up your English
Germany's 10 most weird and wonderful landmarks
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd