Foreign orders at German manufacturers dropped in September, as demand from China continues to be tepid. Manufacturing in Asia's powerhouse also dropped for a third straight month.
Orders from abroad fell by 18 percent in September, compared to the same time the year before, according to Germany's VDMA manufacturing association.
"During the course of the year, business in the mechanical engineering and machine tools sector has once again deteriorated," VDMA Chief Economist Ralph Wiechers said.
The weakness in the Chinese economy was impacting on other markets, Wiechers said.
The weaker orders from abroad were partially offset by orders at home and elsewhere in Europe and the US. It meant that, overall, orders in the first nine months of the year only fell by 1 percent.
"That's down to hard work and shows how competitive our manufacturers are," VDMA economist Olaf Wortmann said.
Meanwhile, China's manufacturing sector contracted in October for a third straight month, an official survey showed on Sunday, while a private factory survey on Monday also showed activity fell for an eighth consecutive month in October.
Despite China's lackluster performance, the Asian powerhouse remains the No. 1 market for Germany's manufacturers and will continue to do so for the forseeable future, according to the VDMA.
ng/cjc (dpa, Reuters)