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Friday 12th of March 2010
March 10, 2010    

German exports slump in January

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by Kay Murchie
German exports slump in January

The Federal Statistics Office today announced a fall in German exports for the month of January, with the cold weather being attributed to the fall, according to analysts.

Exports in January fell by 6.3% on the month to €67.9 billion, while imports grew by 6% to €59.2 billion.

As a result, Germany’s trade surplus narrowed €8.7 billion in January, down from €16.6 billion in the previous month.

Germany, which is Europe’s largest economy, was one of the first major economies to exit recession after experiencing positive growth in the second quarter.

However, the economy shrank by a record 5% in 2009 - the first time in six years the economy had contracted and the deepest since World War II.

The record contraction was attributed to a slump in demand in exports and investment. In 2009, exports plunged by 14.7% on the year.

The fall in exports also led to Germany losing its status as the world’s largest exporter as China overtook it in this field.

Today, it was reported that China’s exports surged for the third consecutive month in February by 45.7% to $94.5 billion compared with a year ago and represented the fastest pace since March 2007.

Meanwhile, commenting on Germany’s export figures, Commerzbank economist, Simon Junker, said the export number was “a disaster”.

“Nevertheless, we are still of the opinion that the first half [of 2010] will be strong, although perhaps not necessarily the first quarter,” adding: “We assume that exports will resume growing in the next few months.”

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