German industry output rises more than expected in January

Data from the the German Economy Ministry shows factory orders fell a shocking 7.4 per cent month on month in January, in what experts described as a horrendous reading. Economists forecast output to gain 2.6 percent month-on-month in January, reversing a 3 percent fall in December.

New orders are highly volatile, but the fluctuations and size of volatility since late-summer have been nearly unprecedented, Carsten Brzeski, an ING economist, said.

But the government said there was no cause for alarm.

Contracts for "Made in Germany" goods were down by 7.4 per cent in January on the month, the economy ministry said.

On a yearly basis, industrial orders dropped slightly by 0.8 percent after expanding 8 percent in December.

"Given the very positive sentiment indicators to date, this is probably an outlier", agreed analyst Ralph Solveen of Commerzbank.

Industrial production is expected to recover in January.

Official data showed that turnover in manufacturing climbed 3.7 percent month-on-month in January, in contrast to a revised 2.8 percent decrease in December.

Heightened uncertainty has weighed on business since June 2016, when Britain voted to quit the European Union, and been sustained by Donald Trump capturing the White House on a protectionist platform, as well as upcoming elections in the Netherlands, France, and Germany in which anti-globalization parties stand to make strides.

Industrial orders from the 19-member eurozone contracted faster then those from nations outside the single currency area.

Looking to individual sectors in industry, capital goods makers added the most production in January, at 6.1 per cent, followed by consumer goods firms at 2.3 per cent and producer goods at 1.7.

  • Zachary Reyes