The ministry calculated that factory output remained unchanged in May compared to a month earlier, corrected for seasonal factors.
Analysts polled by financial services firm FactSet had pencilled in a fractional increase of 0.1 percent following a rise of 0.6 percent in April.
Manufacturing output increased by 0.4 percent month-on-month, but energy output contracted by 3.1 percent and construction output fell by 0.5 percent.
Taking April and May combined to iron out short-term fluctuations, industrial output was 0.5 percent higher than the average for the first three months, the ministry said.
"The uptrend in the manufacturing sector is continuing," it said.
Data published Monday showed that German industrial orders, a key measure of demand for goods in Europe's top economy, slipped by 0.2 percent in May, shallower than analysts had expected.