Germany's exports have posted their biggest rise in more than six years, rebounding strongly in August from declines earlier this year and dispelling fears for a slowdown in Europe's biggest economy.
German businesses shipped goods and services worth 96.5 billion euros ($107.8 billion) abroad in August, which was 5.4 percent more than in the previous month of July and a staggering 9.5 percent more than in the same month a year ago.
The rise was the strongest in a month since 2010, the German statistics office, Destatis, said as it released the data on Monday.
Imports also rose significantly, climbing 3 percent on the month to a total of 76.5 billion euros, and 5.3 percent year-on-year. Destatis data shows that demand for German goods and services was gaining most strongly in the European Union- up by 10 percent. Countries outside the 28-nation bloc took in 9.6 percent more from Germany.
The total volume of exports in the first eight month of the year grew by 0.8 percent on the same period last year, meaning that Europe's biggest economy may be headed toward a new record year regarding exports.
Boost to growth
The August trade data also signals that foreign trade will again make a stronger contribution to overall German growth, after weakening earlier this year.
Thomas Gitzel, analysts with VP Bank, said the trade data was part of a series of good news from the German economy recently. "After rising orders and solid industrial production, the acceleration of exports also surprises on the upside," he told the news agency Reuters.
But HSBC Trinkhaus economist Thomas Schilbe warned that uncertainty remained in the global economy as worldwide trade continued to be weak andthe prospect of Britain losing its access to EU markets after Brexit were weighing on the business outlook.
Nevertheless, Germany is hoping to weather these uncertainties, with the government having increased its growth estimate for this year last week.
According to a projection released by the Economics Ministry on Friday, Europe's biggest economy is expected to grow 1.8 percent - up 0.1 percent over an April estimate - in 2016 before slowing to 1.4 percent growth in 2017 and 1.6 percent in 2018.
uhe/jd (Reuters, dpa, AFP)