Germany Exports Fall Unexpectedly

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Germany's exports and imports declined unexpectedly in September, official data revealed Thursday.

Exports dropped 0.8 percent month-on-month, reversing a 0.1 percent rise in August. At the same time, imports slid 0.4 percent following August's 2.4 percent decrease.

Economists had forecast a 0.3 percent rise in exports and a 0.8 percent increase in imports.

The trade surplus declined to a seasonally adjusted EUR 17.6 billion from EUR 18.2 billion in the previous month.

On a yearly basis, exports decreased 1.2 percent, while imports advanced 5.3 percent in September. Consequently, the unadjusted trade surplus fell to EUR 18.4 billion from EUR 24.2 billion a year ago.

Data showed that the current account surplus fell to EUR 21.1 billion from EUR 26.9 billion in the same period last year.

Recent data suggest that the German economy slowed in the third quarter as manufacturing activity was dampened, mainly due to the weakness in the automobile industry where the transition to a new emissions test regime held up production.

The Federal Statistical Office is set to release the third quarter GDP estimate next week on Wednesday. "Available monthly data suggests that the economy had its worst quarterly performance in 3Q?since the beginning of 2015," ING Bank economist Carsten Brzeksi said.
 
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