According to data released by the Federal Bureau of Statistics on Friday, German manufacturing production in February experienced the largest monthly decline in two years.
According to statistics from the Wiesbaden government, manufacturing output in the euro zone’s largest economy declined by 1.6% from the previous month.
In terms of sub-sectors, the largest decline in production volume was in capital goods (minus 3.1%), followed by construction (minus 2.0%), industrial manufacturing (minus 2%) and consumption (minus 1.5%) and intermediate products (minus 0.7%). percentage).
The Federal Bureau of Statistics emphasized that industrial production has been the main driving force for Germany’s economic growth, but it has lost some of its earlier momentum in February. Despite this, relatively high unfinished orders and strong business confidence indicate that the industry will continue to grow this year.
These figures are far below the 0.3% increase expected by most economists.
Thiess Petersen, a senior economist at the Bertelsmann Foundation based in Gütersloh, told Xinhua on Friday that the temporary drop in production is not uncommon, especially in winter. However, the current rate of decline is "very large."
“It is still to be seen whether this is only a brief decline, but it is worrying that other economic indicators are also deteriorating,” Peterson told Xinhua.
Earlier, the closely watched Ifo business climate index fell slightly by 0.7 percentage points to 114.7 points in March. The manufacturing new orders index fell by 3% between December and January, and the six-month Ifo business outlook fell from 111 points in November 2017 to 104.4 points in March 2018.
The economic experts of the Bertelsmann Foundation stated that the main reason why German companies are increasingly pessimistic may be the risk of protectionist policies. "This danger is disturbing the companies in Germany's exporting countries," Peterson said.
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